If you’ve been following my blogging journey, you’ve probably noticed that I have been quite inactive for most of these past few months. Sometimes life gives you lemons, other times it gives you a baby and a reality check!
With all the sickness during my pregnancy that didn’t only involve just vomiting, pain and migraines, but also a brain scan and a 2-month cortisone diet among other things, I just couldn’t possibly travel!
It’s also not my style to nag about my problems in public because I don’t really want people to pity me, hell no. So writing about and documenting the whole journey was not really an option, even if I tried. I was advised to transform this into a mum blog so I would attract a whole new audience, and generally speaking, mummy things “sell”.
Oh my. I just couldn’t. First of all, my opinions are not quite popular –on the contrary:
I’m pro c-section instead of natural birth and I’m so pro-vaccine and pro-science that it’s kinda annoying for the trend that wants to promote hipster and outdated rituals like giving birth in your own bed or tub as if we are vikings or something.
So you get the picture.. It would be a complete failure OR maybe a complete success because it would definitely make some waves but still… not my thing.
At least not now.
Maybe when I have more experience with motherhood.
I started this blog solely because I wanted to document my travels and share some tips and reviews with people who are interested in that sort of thing which is not possible to write now since I have to stay put for sometime. That was the only purpose. Plus to enjoy some very generous complimentary stays in lovely hotels as well as other great freebies that came my way.
I can’t complain, people have been quite generous with me and, imagine, I’ve been doing this for less than 3 years.
That said, when I started this, I was a basketball player’s girlfriend following him from country to country and city to city so I needed something to keep busy and feel productive.
Right now, my situation is completely different. My then boyfriend is now my husband who works more than full time, 6 days a week. We are based in Athens where we are preparing our new home, we are expecting our first child together which will hopefully be the beginning of a large family we both have dreamt of. And I shouldn’t forget to mention the boss of our house, our Rottie princess Kiara. I feel so blessed it turned out this way.
Yet this long pause from blogging and the distance I took from it got me thinking from a different perspective. And the question was, “What do I want to do”?
Do I want to be that girl that sells her life and everything precious just for the sake of likes and numbers? Do I want to keep spending my days and nights in front of a laptop to try and find something cool to say even if I have zero inspiration? Do I want to force my whole family to go to a “must visit” destination and instead of JUST enjoying the present with them, make them follow me to all the “must take pictures” spots to capture insta-worthy photos? Do I want to leave my child, husband and dog behind and go solo instead of sharing moments and creating memories with them? Do I want to be that girl that poses like an idiot all the time in bathrooms and alleys and in cute looking places for as long as… an Insta-perfect picture takes?
NO! I don’t actually.
I want to be genuine. I want to be able to go to Serbia and relax at my in-law’s house without having to think about where to go to take pictures because I am a travel blogger. I don’t even want to be called a “travel blogger”. Lately, it seems that EVERYONE is a blogger. I started feeling ridiculous using that term to describe my occupation. Because the truth is, I’m also tired of hearing it from others. Whoever takes a trip, even if their talent for writing or photography is mediocre; they instantly become travel bloggers and digital nomads! The other widespread problem in our industry is that they are faking it and pretending they actually make money out of it and write articles like “How I decided to quit my job and move to Bali “ just for the sake of hits and views to their post. Now listen, don’t make that same mistake unless you have time to waste. The reality is that most bloggers don’t treat their blog as a business hence their actual income is ridiculously low if any. The chances of someone making a successful living as a blogger are like 1 in a million or even less.
And don’t be fooled because, unless they have several hundreds of thousands of followers, the money they make will not be enough to pay rent, bills and buy what they WANT and not what companies GIVE them for free. Yes you get some cool perks like free hotel stays and free food but you can’t make a living out of that. The best way to describe it is an expensive hobby – like tennis, that if you happen to be good enough you might even make some money. But until then, you gotta invest, invest, invest.
Business owners have contributed in cheapening this industry by offering bloggers a $10 skin care product or some ridiculous sunglasses to pose with. And new bloggers get so excited at this “new” opportunity that they jump right on it.
Some people are OK with that and it might possibly be their dream. Not mine though.
News flash guys: you are being taken advantage of.
Businesses are looking for free or really cheap exposure for their products while you spend your valuable time and money writing, taking pro pictures, and promoting your posts for them. I’m not saying there aren’t any good brands left who will pay good money but these brands have been doing it for quite a while now and they know who they want to work with while the rest of the market is over saturated with “up and coming” bloggers. Travel, fashion and food is over saturated. There are so many accounts with fake followers going around. And with so many bloggers willing to settle for cheap and unsustainable deals, the industry is on a suicidal path. Sometimes good timing is all it takes, but I believe the time has come and gone.
Yes, you can dream. We can all dream but no, don’t quit your job. Don’t be like the westerners I met in Thailand who did quit their job to move to Thailand and were on the street asking for money to continue their travels. Be responsible. Be realistic. Blogging is not a JOB because just writing will not bring any money (that applies to newbies). Chiara Ferragni is making her fortune from her shoe and clothing line plus other major deals with brands like Pantene, Lancomè and Swarovski. NOT because of her writing.
So bottom line is, I’m breaking up with the travel blogging frenzy and the endless hours you have to invest in it. I will write whenever I feel I have something to say and make sure it is worth your time reading it.
I have some wonderful things coming up in my life and I would much rather talk about those instead of “What to pack for a trip to India”. The answer is whatever the heck you want btw.
So yes, I feel I am too good to be called a travel blogger and I don’t mean to sound arrogant. I am honest, not a copycat, and I am not faking it. I don’t feel that the title “travel blogger” defines who I am. Don’t get me wrong, I love traveling but if it becomes a must-do thing, it’s not fun anymore. Oh and I hate humid climates and insects and no I don’t like EVERY single trip I’ve ever taken. I prefer London anytime instead of Bangkok. So let’s say I am just a travel enthusiast who will keep you posted on everything, just not as regularly as before and please do not expect me going to Asia anytime soon. Yuck.
Until next time!