To celebrate the occasion, I want to talk about starting.
Yes, the art of S T A R T I N G. A blog, a paper, a relationship, a diet, a workout routine, etc. Whatever it may be, starting is a tough thing to do believe it or not. I get the question almost every day…
How do I start a blog?
I wrote down a few technical steps on how to create a blog, but far greater than specifics are the mental inhibitions. In my very first blog post entitled ‘The Beginning,’ I mentioned how it took me well over a year to even start a blog – as well as actually launch it. I think it was the fear of the unknown that made me hesitant. Judgement, too. What would people think of my travels? How would they react to my nontraditional nomadic lifestyle? I traded in a life of politics for a life of reality TV for a life of Argentine hospitality for a life of nonstop travel. And no, a resume does not have to tell a cohesive story thank you very much. I threw in the judgement towel when I confirmed my candidacy for Sean Lowe’s Significant Other, and oops I did it again 3 years ago when I launched my website. Roses didn’t work out, but travel blogging sure did.
To combat any fear within yourself, know that you will never have all the answers to your questions and that perfection does not exist, so find the good in the imperfections. They make us human and relatable. I was so scared to launch my blog and let people read it and possibly criticize me for something I wrote down. I then began to realize if I kept pushing that launch date back, I’d NEVER launch the blog. It would never be in perfect condition so I just had to go for it. My site will always be a work in progress, and that’s okay.
I also learned that putting my words down and releasing them into the universe was therapeutic in a way. The post would be published, people would read it, and my work for that blog was done. I wasn’t the only one thinking those thoughts anymore, and that was some kind of weird therapy for me. Maybe that helps you, maybe it doesn’t. I can be a weird one sometimes…
To me, life is about the journey, where you want that journey to ultimately take you, and what you’re going to do when you get there. If you never start the journey, you’re ultimately doing yourself a huge disservice. This can also be paralleled with throwing caution to the wind. My sister told me about a book she just started reading entitled The Subtle Art of Not Giving a Fuck. If you get offended by the language, don’t blame me. I didn’t write it, I just resonate with it. The past few years of my life can be summed up in the following page:
I can relate in so many ways. No boyfriend of mine ever wore my pantyhose, but one did try on my jeans a while back. They fit him, and I gave a fuck about that.
One of my favorite articles that I must have read 312 times by now was written by Marina Keegan in 2012 before she died in a car wreck. I’d repost the entire article but the fear of copyright infringement is real, so click on the link above. I did read the entire article to a younger class of UGA Chi-Omegas at an end-of-year exercise a few years back because it’s such a powerful and inspiring message. An excerpt from Keegan’s Yale commencement article reads:
There’s this sentiment I sometimes sense, creeping in our collective conscious as we lay alone after a party, or pack up our books when we give in and go out – that it is somehow too late. That others are somehow ahead. More accomplished, more specialized. More on the path to somehow saving the world, somehow creating or inventing or improving. That it’s too late now to BEGIN a beginning and we must settle for continuance, for commencement.
Keegan basically goes on to explain the notion of believing that it’s too late to start something new is bullshit, laughable even. “What we have to remember is that we can still do anything. We can change our minds. We can start over,” she says.
For those of you who have already started something you love, maybe you need to remember why you started. If you’ve lost your focus or passion, get back to those beginning stages of excitement. Evolve into something bigger and better. I’m a firm believer that you should reinvent yourself and your work every 3-4 years. Look at that, I’m right on schedule…
My very first partnership as a travel blogger was in the Atacama Desert in Chile, the driest place on earth. I remember flying in and thinking we were about to land on another planet. We’ll probably never get the chance to walk on Mars in this day and age, but here, I found landscapes that were out of this world. So this was it, a new chapter, a new destination, a new place to get lost. I was nervous and excited since I’d just left my desk job in Buenos Aires for the unknown world of travel blogging. I had no clue what I was doing, but I did know I had a huge passion for travel and the rest just followed.
The above photo was taken on my first excursion at the Chaxa Lagoon, and I remember saying, “I’d love a photo here. It can be my first ‘The Road Les Traveled’ shot for my blog!” I may not have all of the evolution answers just yet, but looking at this picture serves as a damn good reminder.