Not too long ago, I wrote about what travel means to me when I first flew to Sydney as a big-eyed “country bumpkin”.
That’s what travel means to me: A dream coming true for a girl who never thought she’d really be right here, right now, one day.
Within a few years, I have had the good fortune to travel safe and sound to quite a number of other countries and back. In the words of Socality Barbie, I am truly #blessed.
From a dowdy, hesitant and unsure traveller, I have grown in confidence and am able to hunt down airline bargains, book the right accommodation, know when to apply for a visa and even wander Blue Mountains and Bangkok alone. These days, I’m more likely the one grabbing the reigns when it comes to trip planning and even navigation. What a difference a few years and some travelling experience makes! Documenting my experiences on this blog also means I’ll never forget how far I’ve come and how really fortunate I am as a city girl of relative privilege from Singapore.
Some of my friends mentioned that the photos I recently took in Hong Kong were much improved compared to my usual and I have to admit, it does look better than I expected.
In the same way I have grown as a globetrotter, my styling and posing has improved as I do both more often and also take inspiration from my friends like Flora and Nui, as well as a list of fashion sites and blogs. I also often receive great tips as well and I am thankful. When I receive compliments, I still feel a little shy and out of place. After all, I am not stylish naturally and a lot of what you see today on this blog is a real effort to refine and tweak until I am able to present the best work I can offer. It’s also the product of help provided to me by lovely folks who have been there done that and are open to sharing so freely with me. Thank you, you know who you all are!
While some may think that its better to stick to topics that one has expertise in, I can’t completely agree. I have been blogging since I was 13. That’s a good 13 years ago. Time and a consistent push to try new things, topics and approaches have resulted in me finding my own footing and sense of self in a convoluted online world. I may not be the most successful or celebrated blogger around, but I do think that by taking on unfamiliar territory time and again, I have found not just new skills that are continually being honed, but also confidence and amazing interest in all things I am not an expert in.
Some days I spend hours just reading about photography and all its little elements and sub topics. Other days I can consume, with immense hunger, wikipedia and other googled sources on a particular topic like, say, the history of Wan Chai and Hong Kong (just because I’ll be visiting there), till the wee hours of the morning. I spend hours as well scrolling through Instagram and looking at new sources of gorgeously framed photographs and poses to try until I find methods to position my wide and chunky body to flatter it.
My take? Everyone can judge you for what you’re bad at. But I’d rather work on what I’m poor or inexperienced at, so that one day I can be proud at how far I’ve come, not for the praise, but for the satisfaction. I have not been writing and photographing for years and stayed active in the online world to prove that I’m better than anyone. There will always be someone better and infinitely more qualified, but it shouldn’t stop me from creating and making my own unique mark on this world.
There will always be someone better and infinitely more qualified, but it shouldn’t stop me from creating and making my own unique mark on this world.
So if you’re reading my blog, for whatever reasons, be it the incessant long winded rambles or musings, the dose of common sense (I hope it’s common sense) or just to support this girl crazy in love with sharing on her small space on the internet, I hope that other than taking in the photos and reading, that you feel encouraged to go and do what you want with the intention to just… do it and be good at it FOR YOU.
- Thinking of how great it would be if you could have your own blog?
Go forth, set up an account on any blogging platform and write that first sentence and make sure it is published.
- Wondering when you’ll be able to take photos of yourself in your favourite outfits too?
Today is the day. Just go for it and even if its awkward, go and do it. Do it until you don’t even flinch when you strike a pose.
- Doubting if you’d be able to write, but wish you could?
Everyone can write. It’s a matter of how well and how well it will be read. But writing improves with time. The earlier you start, much like investments, the better off you’ll be, even if you started in very small amounts.
- Scared about the criticism and general shit storms that happen online?
Well, all I can say, is steer clear of the trolls and surround yourself with genuine people who are driven, motivated and who criticise, disagree or air their views with the intent to better the situation and not merely to win an argument. You can also read this great article by Flora on 5 Questions to Ask Before Posting on Social Media.
This is in the context of owning and writing in a blog or website, but “write”, “take photos”, “have your own blog” can be easily replaced by other verbs. In short, dammit, just go take that first step.
So I think I’ve gone on for quite enough. Today is the day, and if you need more ‘push’ and motivation, drop me a mail at firstname.lastname@example.org. I am most happy to share whatever I’ve learnt and pass it on, because I’ve realised when it comes to being active online, I want to help raise people up and not drag them down.
We are an amazing force in the world when we do what we are passionate about and it is just super wonderful to see just how powerful we are in our own ways; When we learn from others until we finally create what is dear and precious to us.