“Yay! Another blogger who is sharing their travel pictures and deluding people into believing their life is all sun tans and cocktails!”…said no one ever.
The truth is that I used to think that blogging was annoying too. For starters, a lot of bloggers pop up, they post 2 blogposts and then they get bored and realize that they didn’t get 10,000 views in their first week of blogging and give up. Another problem with bloggers is that they post unrealistic photos and stories without sharing any obtainable ways for how to get there! Nobody wants to follow another shallow blogger to see how fortunate they have it; they want to find inspiring posts with tips on how they can achieve the similar goals that they might share with a blogger. Now, I know I am nowhere near a “successful” blogger yet, but it has been about 8 months since I ventured into “really” blogging and I have gained a decent following in that time. My plan has been to share my blogging tips as a 1 year blogiversary post, but if you are interested in reading about them sooner, just comment below and let me know. For now, I want to share with you my story of why I became “just another travel blogger.”
About 2 years ago I began using Tumblr as more of an online journal for myself. I wanted to keep track of my travels and lifestyle changes after beginning this career as a flight attendant. This wasn’t something that I advertised or promoted, but eventually I had people finding my posts and reaching out to me inquiring about the job. Once that started happening, and I was already into the habit of “blogging”, I adjusted my content to be geared a little bit more towards the aspiring flight attendant. After a while that started growing and I gave in and decided I needed a real blog format which brought me to WordPress. In the beginning I didn’t have a ton of views. Most of my content wasn’t new, it was just posts that I was moving over from my Tumblr account to my actual blog account. After about my first month, I thought about what I wanted this blog to really be about. I enjoyed posting flight attendant tips to help people, but I only had so many tips and needed to post about something else that I was passionate about. I wanted to show people what life was really like as a flight attendant and that is when Life on a Layover really came into light.
I wanted my blogs to go back to being mostly a diary for myself to look back on, as well as be beneficial to my readers. Now, my posts started to be a mix of information for aspiring flight attendants as well as posts for actual flight attendants. I have met so many people flying who struggle with this lifestyle of being on the road and the number one thing that I hear is that this job is lonely. For me, I experienced that sensation a little bit, but for the most part I didn’t have a problem with it. I was exploring and having so much fun on my layovers that I rarely felt lonely. This job was fun and exciting and I was constantly seeing new places and living life as the ultimate tourist. After figuring out that these posts could be beneficial for my coworkers, I really started promoting my blog. As I started sharing my layover posts I received some amazing feedback from other flight attendants who really seemed to utilize my posts for inspiration. Not all the feedback was great though, and I discovered people were making fun of my blog.
Growing up I really was pretty fortunate and I didn’t get made fun of or teased a lot. The worst I had gotten was being called “Jay Leno” and trust me, kids could have done a lot worse than that considering my awkward stages in middle school and early high school were reeeeeally awkward. Like I only had 2 front teeth for years as a 12-15 year old…it was bad. Anyways, I really wasn’t expecting to be made fun of for these posts and I especially didn’t expect this backlash to come from people who I actually knew and thought of as friends. It was truly disheartening to see people mock me online and I did consider throwing in the towel, but then I started running into flight attendants in the airport, some of whom I had never met before, and they were so appreciative and praised my posts! Even just one of those comments could turn my mood around and slowly but surely, the confidence in my blog began to grow. Not only were my co-workers thanking me for my posts, but I had girls from all over the world messaging me on Tumblr, Facebook, and Instagram reaching out to me saying how much they loved my posts!
Reading these comments and engaging with my readers is honestly what inspired me to continue on with my blogging, and now it has turned into so much more than just flight attendant tips and layover tips! It has become a full-blown lifestyle blog for women, travelers, and flight attendants and I am enjoying this journey every step of the way. I still hear and see people putting my blog down, and it bothers me for maybe a second before I remember the number of empowering and encouraging women that this blog has put me in contact with. I truly can’t thank you all enough for your kind words (those pictures are just a few of them) and it has helped me grow into the type of person who wants to lift other women up instead of just competing with them. So many of us get caught up in social media and looks and I’ll admit it is hard not to feel a ping of jealousy every now and then, but I have to say, blogging has put me in such a wonderful community of strong women and I feel so much better being one of them, than competing with them.
Again, thank you all who have been supportive of my blogging journey and please continue to reach out to your favorite bloggers because I promise you, they won’t think it is weird or annoying, it is truly such a nice feeling knowing that our content has helped or inspired some of our readers!