People often ask me how old I am and it’s not because I do or don’t look a certain age but because my career has streamlined into a variety of industries within a short time span. It’s always funny to see a person’s confused face after hearing that I double majored in Psychology and English/Communications and now I travel around the world writing about my experiences and perceptions of a destination. The English major seems to make some sense at least, seeing as I do own a blog and freelance for other outlets but it’s really the Psychology background that has perhaps given me a bit of an edge.
People also ask me how I got into travel blogging. I didn’t study journalism or even marketing. I didn’t know what I was doing when I launched Bohemian Trails and in many ways I still don’t completely know now. To give you an idea of where I started and where I am today, here are three career paths that have led to other opportunities, and ultimately my status as a travel writer.
My Many Chameleon Colors
- Fashion Marketing & Public Relations (London) –> NY Fashion Week Coverage, Print Magazine Articles
- Social Media Expert at an International Record Label (NYC) –> Social media consulting for lifestyle brands
- Travel Blogger with a Purpose (Global) –> Print and Online writing, Marketing Collaborations, Copywriting work
So what does this all mean? It hopefully means that whatever skill you master can help you in your future career initiatives. If I would have guessed that I’d be a travel writer three years after graduating with a Psychology degree, I would have laughed out loud. Yet, here I am, despite any preconceptions I could have made. For my readers who email me asking how I am able to manage a traveling lifestyle, these are a few simple rules I’ve kept in mind.
1) Believe that you can achieve
This phrase can sound both cheesy and annoying, but I’m a firm believer that you really can achieve whatever you desire. I also think that the biggest challenge in accomplishing your goals is the preconception that you can’t. Whether you are willing to admit it or not, if you dedicate yourself to something, you must already believe that you will accomplish this goal. Otherwise, you might not go the extra mile and that extra mile may be all it takes to reach your final destination.
2) Allow your light to shine
Building off my first point, I’ve always been saddened by people who don’t recognize their own strength and I suffer from this disadvantage myself from time to time. Society can give us the impression that it’s bad to brag or to stand out in the crowd. While I don’t condone bragging, there is a difference between being confident and being cocky. There’s nothing wrong with allowing yourself to enjoy your successes.
3) Learn from your mistakes and build upon them
I’ve made countless mistakes in my life and while I could easily give up and bury myself in embarrassment, I choose view each tribulation as a learning lesson. Many times, I’ve appreciated every small or large accomplishment because many of them took months or years to reach. In these situations, knowing that I put forth a great deal of effort makes the reward that much sweeter. Working hard is never a bad thing.
4) Stop comparing yourself to others
For me, this is easier said than done. While I’m always happy for my friends and family when good things come their way, I still hear that inner voice telling me that I need to pick up the pace and reach my own goals. Of course it’s good to feel motivation, but if you compare yourself to others in your industry or even in your daily life, you will always feel second best. I’ve made a conscious effort to stop wondering what everyone else is doing and focus on what I need to do to keep my readers happy.
5) Help with no reward
This was a hard concept for me to get my head around, especially in the competitive industries in which I’ve worked. However, I always try to help out other writers with no expectation of receiving something in return. Some might not agree with this tip but when I think back to how willing people who I barely knew were to help me get my first writing gig, pass my resume along or offer to give me career advice, I know this is the right thing to do. In the end, you can’t go wrong with offering help where you can.
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