This question came to me from someone in the Side Hustle Teachers community, and I wanted to answer it here because it’s something a lot of people may worry about.
Here’s the question: “I want to start a blog, but I’m worried that my students will find it. What should I do?”
My question is, why?
Honestly, I understand the sentiment, but I also know that there’s no reason to be concerned about this.
Yes, if we put ourselves out there, our coworkers, students, and families might discover our blogs. But having a blog, even one for profit, isn’t anything to be ashamed of.
These days upwards of 30% of teachers have jobs outside of school, and more and more of them are creating those jobs for themselves rather than working for yet another boss. For good reason – it’s awesome!
So, let’s just agree that unless your blog is about something illegal or is just bitching about your boss/ students/ job, you’re good.
The question I get next is usually, “Have your students found your blog?”
Yes. Yes, they have.
A few years ago, when I was still working with moms, a student found my Instagram account. (It wasn’t hard, my account had my name attached, but one student thought he was really clever for finding it.) He was going up and down the hall outside my classroom saying, “Side Hustle Moms,” in a loud voice, so I asked him what he was doing.
He “confronted” me about my account. (Insert a creepy dun-dun-dun sound here.)
It was almost comical to see his face go completely flat when I wasn’t horrified to know he’d found me out… I just confirmed I had a business and that I helped moms start businesses.
Except for blocking a handful of students who followed my IG account, that was the end of it.
This year another group of students found my business. A couple have said they’ve listened to my podcast, and others have asked what Side Hustle Teachers is.
Truth be told, I think they’re just trying to get me to go on a tangent and avoid doing work… or see if they can get a rise out of me… but after a couple days they just drop it.
I’m proud of my business.
I’m proud of the community of nearly 12,000 teachers I’ve built.
I’m proud of the hundreds of teachers I’ve helped through my courses and coaching.
I’m proud of the money this business brings to my family.
All that said, the question still stands.
What should you do if your students find your blog?
Take a breath.
The first time someone from school finds your blog can bring on different responses from different people.
Honestly, when that original kid started shouting my business name down my hallway I thought I was going to throw up. It was an automatic, subconscious response. But once I took a breath, I remembered that I was still me, he was still a student, and my blog was still awesome.
Acknowledge your blog
Not only is it pointless to deny your blog once someone’s found it, it’s unnecessary.
A simple, “Yes, I blog at Side Hustle Teachers,” is enough.
You don’t have to explain, justify, or tell your story.
A coworker discovered me on Facebook one time and told her it was my blog and that she should join my group.
Most of the time when it’s a student who brings up your business, it’s because they want to either get a rise out of you or get you off topic.
Confirm that you have a blog so they know you’re not embarrassed about it, then carry on.
If it’s a coworker or admin, simply tell them you don’t use school time to talk business… and carry on.
With all the stuff on the internet, your blog got found! It’s easy to miss this fact in the moment when a student is asking about your blog… but this is a good sign.
Your students or coworkers might not be your target audience, but the fact that you are being found and read by people other than your relatives and college roommate means that you are becoming more discoverable by everyone online.
So once you’re past the initial “oh crap” moment, do a little happy dance!
In order to make money online you have to be found by people. Sometimes that means people you wish wouldn’t find you.
But don’t let the possibility of feeling awkward for 30-60 seconds stop you from building something great.
Teacher Blog Academy can help you get your blog up and running and making money faster and easier by following our 5 Step Roadmap. Learn more here.