I started a YouTube channel a few years ago as a fun outlet away from medicine. I didn’t post much on the channel and eventually deleted most of the content. It was not until summer 2016 that I began uploading videos consistently because I wanted to document an important part of my life: closing our medical practice after 10 years and moving out of our country house to live somewhere new. Like most people I was already on Facebook and had an Instagram and Twitter account but as a full-time Physician, wife and mother of three, I really didn’t have time to spend on social media consistently.
After my family moved I was fortunate enough to take a much-needed break from Medicine and indulge in many artistic and creative ventures including baking,styling hair,meeting interesting people and vlogging about it. I even took a professional acting course, which is a whole other story in itself. It wasn’t till January 2017 that I decided to start a blog www.HabibaTunauMD.com after thinking about it for months. I have always considered myself a creative person who loves sharing my thoughts on medicine as a career, health concerns, all things food, art, travel and being multicultural. The challenge for me has been trying to focus all my multiple interests into what is considered a “niche”, so for those who love labels I would consider myself a LifeStyle blogger and at times a Health blogger. Here is a blog post submitted to KevinMD: 5 Things I Learned while having 3 kids in Medical School.
As a vlogger and blogger I am still new to the game and love filming and editing videos, taking pictures, writing and creating content but to be honest it can feel isolating at times and tedious sitting in front of a computer screen or typing on a keyboard for hours at a time. For those who think blogging is not work they have no idea! As a very social person a few months ago I was craving human contact (outside of patients). I decided it would be a good idea to reach out to other bloggers and artists here in North Carolina. I went online and found a few bloggers and picked one that I thought seemed relatable. I liked her blog content and picked up the courage to contact her directly on Facebook. I was surprised when she actually wrote back and we found that we had a lot in common such as our background in New York and our love for Caribbean food. That was the beginning of our blogger friendship which led to an invitation to an event hosted by Black Bloggers United where she would be speaking. *See The Video* The rest is history.
Since then I have been to a number of events – some social , some educational or a combination of both. It is nice to be reminded about the importance of networking and reaching out, being unafraid to share your story or promote your product. If you don’t tell anyone or show anyone how else will they know? It has also been so refreshing to step away from my computer or notepad and walk into new venues, meet new people and share new ideas and food; best of all I get to connect with creative open-minded people I genuinely enjoy being around. Another unintended consequence of meeting other bloggers and creatives is the sense of acceptance that I feel. I am not the only professional who happens to identify as a “creative weirdo” and loves all things art and social media. In this group no one seems to care that I am also a medical doctor and I am free to just be myself. I also like the fact that my interactions with other bloggers has kept me motivated and consistent. Ok I could be a bit more consistent with my content and I am working on it. The point is sometimes we all need people to keep us accountable and offer that extra push to stay on track, to be brave and try new things. It is important to remember your voice matters, your art matters and find a group, or “tribe” that appreciates you.
Many of the bloggers and artists I have met have other jobs that they balance while others do it as their primary occupation, monetizing their craft and generating an income. It is about much more than getting dressed up, making appearances, complimentary food, trips and products. It clearly takes a lot of dedicated work over a long period. For all the wonderful bloggers and artists I have met so far I respect their “ hustle” because it is not easy.
In an ideal world I will practice medicine and still have time for my artistic interests. I am working on that balance and trust me I have no plans on giving up on blogging or YouTube and I certainly plan to maintain all the blogger friendships I have made. It is amazing what is possible when you open yourself up to new ideas!
Habiba Tunau MD
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