Blogger Helen Chik On Ditching The 9-5 And Becoming a Full-Time Influencer

helen chik
Instagram: @helenchikx

Sitting in a cubicle staring at a spreadsheet, it’s safe to say Helen Chik could have never predicted her dream life was around the corner. Having spent five years at uni studying Actuarial Studies and Applied Finance, she had finally landed a coveted job at one of Australia’s largest banks. But just a few weeks later, she woke up one Monday morning and realised that the cubicle life wasn’t doing it for her.
That’s where the similarities to most ‘I left my 9-5 job and traveled the world‘ stories end. There was no dramatic exit where she threw a stack of papers on the ground while yelling “I quit!” Instead, she revamped a blog she had started back in uni, as a creative outlet to keep her sane while working in the corporate world. Less than a year later, she had turned helenchik.com into her full-time career — leaving the stilettos and suits behind for a life of sangria and sundresses. These days, she’s a globetrotting blogger and influencer, Market Editor at GRAZIA magazine and her most recent role, an expecting mum.
We caught up with Helen to chat about ditching the 9-5, turning your passion into a career and her pregnancy journey thus far.
Tell us a little about your transition from the finance world to becoming a blogger.

I actually started blogging many years ago when I left high school but I only kept my blog for a year before my studies got the better of me and I decided to abandon ship. Fast forward another five years and I landed my first bank job and within five weeks I was bored so I decided to re-brand my blog and start with a clean slate.
At what point did you realise you could make it your full-time career?
When I started the blog I had no idea or intention of making it into a full-time job. It was only when I started taking on so much work that I could essentially replicate the income I was earning at my bank job that I realised it could be a career.


How did you go about finding your niche in the blogging world?
I started out doing fashion but slowly evolved the categories I covered to travel, beauty and lifestyle. Not only do I have an interest in all of these areas but it’s also important to not pigeon hole you and your brand to just one niche. The classic example I give is that not everyone is into fashion but almost everyone is interested in travel so covering both would mean you would reach a wider audience.
What was that lightbulb moment when you realised 9-5 work just wasn’t fulfilling you anymore?
I think it became clear to me when I was just looking for any excuse not to take on any further responsibilities at my corporate job and spent most of my days playing office pranks on my boss and work husband. It was also apparent that being chained at my desk was giving me serious anger issues—I was spending my day arguing with financial advisors over trivial matters.


What advice would you give to someone who’s thinking about leaving their 9-5 job for something they’re more passionate about?
I will always encourage others to do and find what it is they love but also caution that the dream has to be realistic and thought through. I don’t think I would’ve had the courage to quit my day job unless I had a plan of how I was to sustain my business and grow.
Having said this, you will always find success in doing things that you find joy in as it won’t feel like a chore and your mind will always be looking for ways to innovate and create, which, ironically, was a line that was frequently used at my corporate job. 


What are some of the coolest experiences you’ve had so far being an influencer and blogger?
I think every single time I’m given an opportunity to travel would be a pinch me moment — going on Contiki’s, The Yacht Week and various other press trips have been such a highlight for me. Being part of campaigns such as the Country Road Mother’s Day campaign was also amazing.


How would you sum up your personal style in three words?
Vibrant, versatile and vivacious. I’m not sure why I decided to alliterate, but it sounded right in my head!


As someone who travels a lot, what are some of your jet-setting beauty essentials?
I always find this so hard to do because I tend to sleep through my plane trips but staying hydrated is so important for both your body and your skin. I love keeping a sheet mask in my bag in case my skin really feels like it needs the boost during the flight and lip balm is key too!
You recently announced you’re pregnant. Congrats! How excited are you about becoming a mum?
Thank you times a million! First things first, this was not a planned pregnancy for us and whilst I am super excited to meet my bubba, I’m also terrified. I think the adjustment of thinking and caring for not just myself but also another human being has been quite challenging but something that I’ve learnt a lot from.


Have you had to change your style at all so far to accommodate for your baby bump?
I definitely have had to shop a new wardrobe of staples as my denim shorts and skirts no longer fit me. I think I’ve got it easy because we’re heading into summer and I couldn’t think of anything better than just throwing on a beautiful summer maxi to be both comfortable and stylish in.
I haven’t quite yet resorted to looking for maternity brands per se but definitely having to shop larger sizes has taken me a while to adjust to. I’ve also had to start asking myself whether something was going to fit me in a month’s time with this bump growing exponentially as each day passes so anything elasticated is my best friend at the moment — sexy, right?

20 Questions




Born and raised: In Sydney and will forever be a Sydney girl.


Currently living: In Sydney – haha.
Your personal motto: When you put your heart and mind to a task, anything is achievable.
Success is: To me, it’s when you can look back a year from now and list all the milestones you’ve crossed off and being able to see where you’ll be five years from now. Vision is key.


The advice I would give to my 20-year-old self: To ask yourself what you really want from life and then give everything a shot whilst you’re still young because there’s always time to start again when you’re 20.
People are surprised that I: Used to work in finance and had a corporate 9 to 5 whilst working on my blog.
The biggest risk I’ve taken that actually paid off: Despite the objections of my family, I decided to leave my ex-husband, started traveling and just a year later I left my job to pursue a career I could’ve only dreamt about five years ago.


I’m most proud of: Being able to prove to my family that I can make a living off doing what I love and that the world doesn’t revolve around doctors, lawyers and bankers.
My most used emoji is: The two twin dancing girls.
Currently binge-watching: Gossip Girl – I think I’ve watched the series over 5 times.


Morning ritual: Seeing as I can’t run as much as I’d like to now, I love doing a spin class to get myself active and ready to tackle the day.
Last thing I do before bed: I write a list of all the things I need to get done for the next day – boring, I know.
Healthy snack that’s $$$ but worth it: Acai bowls! I can’t get enough of them!


Guilty pleasure: Is it bad that I love mi-goreng? I think it’s the Asian in me.


3 things vital to my day: I think right now my obsession is juice as I’ve cut coffee out of my life until the baby arrives… plus, being able to see my family whenever and making sure I get time outside of the house.
Cafe: John Smith in Waterloo.


Juice: Anything with orange or watermelon. I also had the most amazing fresh strawberry juice in Bali earlier this year that I’ve been dreaming of since.
Coffee: I haven’t had a coffee in a while now that I’m pregnant but my poison would be a skim latte.
Favourite place to sweat: Probably in a boxing or spin class.


My spirit animal is: I always struggle with this one but I think I’m going to have to go with a whale.


Follow Helen

Website: helenchik.com
Instagram: @helenchikx
Facebook: facebook.com/CH1Kx

Zeen is a next generation WordPress theme. It’s powerful, beautifully designed and comes with everything you need to engage your visitors and increase conversions.

Top 3 Stories

More Stories
holiday cocktails
3 Holiday Clean Cocktail Recipes to Impress your Friends and Family with This Season