When you meet me for the first time and you ask me “what do you do?”, I will probably not admit that this is part of something I do in my life. You will not hear me state that I am a blogger until you get close enough to me to know this. Why is that? I’m actually shy to talk about it or even boast about it, but if you meet me, I can come off as a confident person and I owe it to this site.
This year, I’ve hit 4 years of blogging since last month. 4 YEARS passed by just like that! However, I came a long way with this blog, From One Girl to One World. Whether you are a blogger yourself or not, you’ll probably know just how much one has to put themselves out there to create content. It’s courageous, really. It is certainly not for everyone as many people do like to live private lives, and I, for the most part, am still private and only want to share details when I feel like it has the power to bring up thought-provoking, life-provoking concepts I can write about to share.
The idea of starting my blog was only to keep memories of where I’ve gone and my pictures, but it’s become a place where I can help others to make their own memories. However, a big part of my brand here is to show my face. I am the face of my own blog, which means I do need to be confident about that.
There are many ways of how a blog can give you confidence and here are the ways that blogging for as long as I have, starting since I was a junior in college, have made me confident.
1. I got very inspired in my life that I pursued more hobbies.
The more I kept on navigating life with all these awesome adventures to go on, the more I wanted to keep on doing that. For most of my life, I was an addicted gamer and had no interest in pursuing much outside of playing on the computer.
Not until I met my friends, where I became a city dwelling teenager to a young adult, just having the time of my life with my friends, and then I fell in love with going into museums and then being so enamored by history. I wanted to know more, thus I wanted to DO more. My friends kept giving out all of these ideas for us to have fun and they introduced me to a lot more than I thought I’d be into: concerts, hiking, doing fun art and craft things, and road trips. I became quite obsessed with the idea of exploring all these areas, I actually made a WHOLE blog around these things.
And so, I carried on that same attitude when my number one hobby of blogging birthed multiple hobbies. I wanted to keep pursuing new things: kayaking, yoga and meditation, running, binge watching on personal development YouTube videos and podcasts, and lately, really finding enjoyment in photography.
I’m always finding new hobbies and that makes me happier as a person that I can broaden my horizon through broadening out my experiences, let alone allowing me to keep on pursuing them.
2. I used to be too shy to network and to build a community.
This blog started off with me traveling with family and friends and finding my true self from these things. But, along these journeys, my reality being a young adult wasn’t so ideal — I had to go through a lot of pain starting as a young child being bullied and the trauma carried onto me as I got older into my relationships with people and it affected my well-being right before and during when I started this blog.
Being bullied, especially, throughout elementary school really set off my confidence as a person. I had delayed speech as a young one and therefore, I was really quiet and came off anti-social among my peers. I was targeted for being bullied because I was simply quiet and I guess, young kids those days thought it would be easier to pick on me and judge me because they felt superior and knew I couldn’t stand up for myself.
I lost many of my youth years being able to get out there and achieve things. But, I remembered that writing was always one of those things I knew I could find a voice in! My 5th grade teacher wrote in my yearbook that my writing was beautiful and that I should keep pursuing it. Well, here I am, pursuing it through my blog.
Because I was so shy when I was young, I remembered feeling like there’s no way I could have a spotlight on me… there’s no way I could even muster up the courage to talk to new people… and there’s no way I could share anything of myself because who would even care to? Well, I was wrong!
I learned to put myself out there and meet so many people that are doing things that I like to do such as exploring and sharing what the outdoors mean to them and other similar bloggers who are all in my boat to continually produce kickass quality content. Some have become awesome online friends and people to share experiences with one another. Even if they are not in my niche of blogging, I have gotten great insight and learned so much from other bloggers.
I was also able to build up a fan base through followers who find me on Instagram and those who are signing up through my newsletter. I’ve had some really nice heartfelt conversations with some of them and have also heard of their next plans in life. That makes me feel so connected to people who I may never have the chance to meet in person, but knowing they were there to reach out to me, it means a lot. (Read until the end)
I was also not confident in sharing my work with companies that could work with me, but guess what? Public relations companies and other brands came to me and were excited to have the opportunity to work with me! I, of course, do not choose everyone to work with, but knowing your work has impressed other companies can definitely bring a light of confidence. This leads to my next point of how I got more confident.
3. It helped me sharpen up my skills and open up new opportunities.
I am not a full-time blogger (yet!), but I am, for so long, a full-time marketer. I slightly studied marketing throughout college and I ended up pursuing it as my career by chance. Digital marketing that is. With digital marketing, you are expected to know so much from working with multiple software programs to learning how to use social media to how to research and analyze data and to learning HOW to write so you can sell.
I love helping businesses, most particularly small to medium businesses. However, for a long time while being in marketing, I never knew what area of marketing I wanted to specialize in. The field is broad and there’s so many roles you can pursue. I owe it to my blog for helping me be able to pursue ALL kinds of those roles: writing, social media, SEO, graphic and web design, affiliate promotion, networking, photography, email marketing.
I was able to impress my recruiter from my previous full-time job that I got hired on the spot. Wait, this happened twice. I got hired on the spot from my job before that too. I had been stuck in some periods of time where I had a hard time finding jobs, even when I tried everything to gain experience and I’ve self-taught myself how to code and create websites as young as 8 years old. This blog wasn’t my first website ever, but this is my first website being an adult and I’m proud of it.
It led to a lot of great opportunities from me being able to collaborate with brands I look up to (such as recently with my favorite app ever, AllTrails) to being featured in places I look up to too (Outside Magazine!!!).
I was also able to share more stories and do some guest-blogging to feature my writing through article-based publications. Opportunities definitely flow when you believe they can.
After all, I see blogging as a long-term investment. I kept writing for many years on this blog and then found out I was marketing it in the wrong way, which led me to go around and fix things. I got self-hosted in 2018 and then I was taken more serious on search engines. You’ve probably heard how bloggers can make money off their site, well that was hardly on my mind and I wrote on my blog as a hobby to begin with. It wasn’t until I realized that I deserved more and that my hard work needs to pay off that I started treating it as a business. I didn’t even start making money off my blog until late 2020.
Today, I am now full-time freelancing. Because of all of my previous work experiences in my field and in combination with my blog, I had gained confidence in my career skills. I can now speak to businesses and business owners with confidence to keep up with having my own clients to manage the projects of clients on my own. I am still navigating the world of freelancing, but I wouldn’t have it any other way right now because I can build work around freedom and have more ability to do project management.
4. I’ve realized I can change lives.
As I’ve mentioned, I am so profoundly lucky that I can grow a fanbase. People who are returning to my site to read my work or to follow updates on my adventures is freaking an amazing feeling! Having the influence to influence people’s decisions of where to go and what to do is something that I wouldn’t have been able to do prior to blogging. People asking me questions on specific locations and trusting my advice and expertise is unbelievably… amazing.
From 2019-2020, I participated and completed the 52 Hike Challenge. I’ve had some followers and friends who read my stories on it and they have also decided to participate in the challenge. Even if some didn’t complete it, people still took the risks to get involved in this outdoor activity and are inspired to make a spiritual, mental, and physical change in their life.
I want to be able to give others that chance to know that the life they dream is a life they can achieve. It took me so many obstacles, trials and errors, and years to be able to know that and I am still working on this life I desire.
You just have to believe in yourself a lot, MANIFEST that your goals will occur, and understand that every decision you make will influence your life later. My decision to start this blog as a project for myself because I was bored as f*ck in college… Well, maybe being bored can birth long-term, life-changing projects.