Unless you’ve been
hanging out under a rock you can’t fail to have noticed Ella Woodward, the clean-eating advocate who’s exploded into our lives over the past few years!
It started with a blog, now there’s the book and even the App. I follow Ella on Instagram and every picture is stunning and I get inspired with the life of this ex-model as she effortlessly does yoga on a beach in one post (I tried yoga once and quickly realised I’m the tin man) and sips on a perfectly made juice in another. I too love a bit of clean-living and covet her effortless lifestyle, so when I got the chance to catch up with her at Britmums Live, I said yes. Of course!
And I’ll be honest – I was a bit fan girl!
I did mange to avoid blurting out “I’m your number one fan” in a Notting Hill stylee (!) but was equally relieved to discover Ella has a team of people working with and for her. Phew! Much as I love her feed, it can leave you feeling a tad inadequate as a human being so nice to hear she’s not actually superhuman!
Like me, she’s addicted to avocados and, given that I’m all about being “My Best Me” I came away from the conference with a signed copy of her best-selling Deliciously Ella which I’m keen to test out. Ella was diagnosed with a rare illness that meant she had to change her life by changing her diet and I love the whole-food approach to life and will be working my way through the book – which in itself is beautiful. Full of gorgeous, inspirational pictures which just encourage you want to make better food choices.But I was also keen to ask Ella about the social-media side of life – given that it’s such a huge part of her world, and mine:
K: So lovely to meet you. I follow you on Instagram and I feel like you just exploded into my world! One minute, there was nobody in the public eye called Ella and then – there you were!
E: My flatmate says that! She says “It’s like you’re stalking me. You’re everywhere”! It’s been such a weird few years and it’s all been so unexpected – that’s the main thing.
K: Talking flatmates, if I was your mate I’d be terrified to cook for you!
E: That’s too funny – my mates are the same. So when we get together I end up cooking for them 98% of the time!
K: I saw a refreshing Instagram post the other day about how you’d been having anxiety about social media and stayed off for a few days. How do you mange the social media expectations of your 484k followers on Instagram?
E: Yeah – It’s really hard. It’s not that it’s not me on social media. It 100% is but obviously it’s like the sparklier side of you. Everyone has down days and no matter what’s happening in their life. I do find that really hard sometimes because you’re expected to give out this image and sometimes you don’t feel like you. So you have to find a balance because social media just doesn’t stop.
K: I find selfies difficult. To me, a selfie says “look at me” and yet equally, if I put a selfie on Instagram, quoting where I got my clothes etc. I get a gazillion more likes than any other picture I put on there?
E: Totally! When I first started, I did no pictures of myself – it was all about the food. I didn’t want to be in it at all and then I realised ,after about a year, I’d find a feed that I really liked and then think “Who is this? I love all this stuff”. I think it is just part of human nature and I realised that in order to grow the social side of life and get people excited and get the message out, I had to put myself out there. If it’s anonymous, you won’t grow in the same way but yes, it’s a difficult balance.
K: I would love to know your tips for selfies and how you manage your social media calendar? Do you have times in the day when you switch off from it?
E: Well, I really try to come off it in the evenings. I didn’t used to. I used to wake up at 3 am and I’d check my social accounts and I now try to leave work and shut off to social media. I also find my response is nowhere near as good in the evening. In the day people are at work and they’re bored, whereas in the evening there’re probably doing something more interesting!
Selfies are so hard. I still find it really hard and usually get someone else to take a picture.
K: Who IS that? How is there someone always there?
E: Ha! I have no time on my own! It’s my friends or my team in the office. I find taking a selfie awkward. Much easier to ask someone to take it. But it’s hard putting yourself out there, because you are really putting YOU out there.
K: Have you noticed which of your pictures get the best response?
E: It varies so much. I can’t quite figure out what it is. But if you take an image of yourself, it’s just your face. If someone else takes it, there’s other stuff going on in the picture. Which is quite nice.
K: What’s been the best thing about your success?
E: I feel so lucky to have a platform to talk to people about something I care about so much. That, in itself, is amazing. It’s incredible to get people changing their lives and seeing a huge difference after transforming their eating.
“Deliciously Ella” is published by Yellow Kite – RRP £20.00