Julie & Julia Movie Overview
Julie, a middle-aged, government employee, is exhausted with her life. She works long hours, has a dismal commute, and is disappointed in herself. But instead of coming home to Netflix and chill, as most of us would, she cooks. Cooking and Julia Childs is about the only thing Julie loves, other than her husband, of course.
One day, after an upsetting encounter with an old friend who’s finding success as a blogger, Julie vents to her husband about how she can do exactly what her friend is doing, even better, in fact! Taking her word for it; Julie’s husband helps her set up a blog. Julie’s idea, to cook and blog her way through Julia Child’s cookbook, Mastering the Art of French Cooking, in about a year is ambitious.
What Julie Has in Common with Modern Bloggers
Most bloggers, like Julie, have a lot on their plate. They are busy, often overwhelmed, and sometimes burned out. However, this doesn’t mean that their lives are meaningless or that their work isn’t worth it anymore. It totally is!
Bloggers have the ability to reach thousands of people. Whether they use that to market their business or to engage with their community as a whole. They wield a lot of influence, especially in our day and age when a lot of information, and sense of community, is gleaned from the internet. In Julie & Julia, Julie uses her blog to create a community of foodies and to catalog the information she learns as she cooks the recipes in Julia’s book.
4 Lessons a Modern Blogger Can Learn from Julie
1. Setting Goals and Tracking Them is Key
In the movie, Julie says she has a hard time following through on her goals because she loses focus. So to side-step this issue, when she creates her blog, she makes sure to set a visual countdown to accomplish her goal. This visual reminder keeps her on track.
As a dedicated blogger, you can do the same. Create a visual to constantly remind yourself of the goal, or goals, you’ve set. Although Julie’s reminder was on her blog, yours can be anywhere you’ll frequently see it.
Even though setting a goal and being able to see it is important, there’s another key ingredient to the mix: tracking. Tracking your goal is a perfectly reasonable way to make sure it’s accomplished. And that’s exactly what the countdown timer was for Julie. It was a visual to see what she had accomplished and how much she had left to do.
2. Use the People Around You for Support and Accountability
Bloggers have a lot on their plate. Researching, writing, and pitching your posts are the norms of the job. However, it can’t hurt to track how far you’ve come and what you have yet to accomplish. Start as Julie did – set a goal. Create a visual reminder. Track your goal to its completion. And finally, and most importantly, find someone you trust to talk about your goal.
Julie did this with her husband, best friend, and mom, but it doesn’t have to be a family member or friend. You can find a fellow entrepreneur, or even a mentor whom you trust to help remind you of why you’re doing what you’re doing. And having someone to bounce issues and ideas off and report your successes to are great ways to help you accomplish the goal(s) you’ve set. Plus, a little accountability goes a long way.
For example, in the movie, Julie’s best friend and mom always tell her the unfiltered truth. It hurts a little, but it’s for the best. It gives Julie a really good understanding of where she is. And it gets her out of her own mind space and back to reality. That’s something we all need from time to time. But they don’t just stop with reality, they encourage Julie to work on her goal.
3. Frustration is Inevitable
Julie encounters small frustrations on a daily basis. However, she also faces big frustrations too. She has few readers at the outset of her blog, and even when her blog gets a decent following, interviews keep falling through, and the biggest blow of all: she finds out that Julia Childs, her idol, doesn’t approve of her blog. All of this builds until she gets in a heated argument with her husband and he leaves.
Your frustration as a blogger can build too. It’s important to realize, though, that frustration is inevitable. It’s going to happen, so you might as well accept it and move on. This is what Julie had to do in Julie & Julia. Some of Julie’s frustrations never went away, like Julia Childs disapproval of her blog and a small following. But some did go away. She gets a big interview with a food columnist who gives her the big break she was looking for, and her husband comes back.
As a blogger, you have the ability to change your outlook on your frustration as Julie did. Some frustrations will go away and some won’t. And that’s okay. Giving yourself the autonomy to let go of frustration and keep working toward your goal is empowering.
4. Hard Work Pays Off
Everyone has heard this. If you work hard, it will pay off. This old adage should be changed to: if you work hard, it will pay off… eventually. Not everything you work hard on will immediately get you what you want. For example, you may write a blog post that takes months to receive the recognition it deserves. Or you may pitch your business to an investor who likes your idea, but takes months for their funding to actually come through.
Julie encounters this type of long-term payoff. Right before she finishes the final few recipes in Julia’s cookbook, her blog is written about by a food columnist for a big newspaper. That recognition leads to more opportunities for her. And most important, she realizes that she is capable of accomplishing her goals. After working hard for more than a year, her food blog finally paid off the way she wanted it to.
As a blogger, you have to have this same type of patience. It’s not easy, though. Hard work never is. Some of the hard work you put into researching, writing, and pitching your posts pays off right away and some work takes a long time to pay off. The key is to not get stuck; to keep going even when it seems like nothing is going the way you want it to.
What to Takeaway from Julie’s Experience in Julie & Julia
In the end, Julie set a goal and accomplished it. With the help of people such as her mom, bestie, and husband, she worked past her failures. She worked past her frustration. Finally receiving the recognition she desired and deserved. Just like Julie, you too can accomplish the goals you set for yourself as a blogger and get the recognition you want and are worthy of.