Who am I if I’m not a travel blogger?
January is always a time for reflection isn’t it? When I think back to this time last year my family was starting 2020 with so much excitement. We had a really big year to look forward to, with three weddings and the birth of our little adventurer on the horizon.
We were also planning our final holiday as a family of three to Albania.
But, along with so many others, we could only watch in dismay as one by one the things we had been counting down to were cancelled or postponed.
As Covid numbers began to soar across Europe, we made the difficult decision not to go on our holiday to Albania the night before we were due to leave. Everything was so up in the air and we just didn’t feel that we could risk making the two-week trip when I was seven months pregnant and with a toddler in tow.
In hindsight, that was totally the right call. But it did mean the only holiday we managed to take was a brief trip to Wales, in between lockdowns.
Which, while a lovely break, doesn’t provide much content for someone who calls themselves a “travel blogger”.
A change of direction
So what do you do when you’re a travel blogger who can’t leave the house? Over the last year it’s a discussion many bloggers in this area have been having.
If anything, one thing it has taught us is how fortunate we were. How lucky were we to live in a country where it’s relatively easy to travel? Where our passport opens up the world to us? Where we could hop on a plane at a moment’s notice and be in another country within hours? I hope we all remember that when the time comes to be able to travel safely again.
Over the last few months I’ve watched in awe as bloggers and travel writers have effortlessly pivoted to talk about interior design, their families and even their baking attempts.
We’re constantly being told by those in the know to share more of ourselves. Apparently our followers are more likely to interact with us if they feel connected to more aspects of our lives.
But what if that’s not you? While I love travelling and sharing my adventures and hopefully inspiring the odd person or two to take a grown up gap year, I’m quite private about other areas of my life. I live a very specific part of my life online and there’s a reason for that.
Obviously I have many other sides to who I am. I’m a mum, I’m a wife, I’m a journalist (when I’m not on maternity leave). But these are topics I rarely blog about.
Because the more we share of ourselves the more open to comment we become. I love the way we are raising our children, but personally I don’t want strangers questioning my parenting skills. We are lucky enough to live in a beautiful home, but I don’t want people I don’t know commenting on my choice of interiors (and quite frankly, I don’t have the time or the energy to keep it as spotless as it would need to be!).
Don’t get me wrong, I love learning more about other people and the parts of their lives they choose to share online. But I know from other way more successful bloggers than me, that that sometimes comes at a cost.
I’ve always run this blog as a hobby alongside my day job. I don’t need to make money from it, so I’m not as dependent on clicks and visitor numbers as people who do this as their full-time job and, understandably, are affected by the slump in viewers many of us have seen.
What’s next for this travel blogger?
So for those of us who don’t feel comfortable sharing every detail of our lives on social media, what’s next?
For me, this last year has been thinking about what’s important in my life. Seeing our second little adventurer so sick in hospital really reinforced how important family life is to me and spending time with my children, especially now when they are young.
We’re currently looking at ways we can continue to have family adventures in the future, including potentially buying a campervan. So I’d love to hear any tips you may have on that! We’re also hoping to go on a big trip in 2022, and beginning to talk about that is reigniting our wanderlust.
I can’t deny that I’ve really missed our smaller trips too. I’ve missed visiting family and friends, something we regularly did in our ‘old life’. I’ve missed our regular visits to Brighton and our camping adventures. So we’re hoping that in the not too distant future we’ll be able to do that again.
So I guess for the time being I’ll call myself a “travel blogger in waiting” and I hope that when it’s finally safe to travel again, you’ll be able to join us for the ride.
I feel your pain! I was able to catch up on some posts I had meant to write about previous trips that just got lost in the shuffle but now I’m running out of content and inspiration – and it seems like just about everyone else has cornered the market on reviewing virtual travel. It’s really, really hard to write about travel when you can’t even tell people when that travel might be able to take place. I’m trying to find my new inspiration in my hometown so I can focus on local adventures for the time being.
Yes, it’s really hard when everything is still so up in the air. I think local adventures are definitely the way forward for the time being though. Also great that you managed to get through your backlog of older posts!
What a great blog, thank you. You have nailed something about blogging that has connected with us; share you. We have stumbled on this element of our success and you have put it into words, thank you. The more we share about us as human beings and not just travellers, the more we seem to cement ourselves in people’s hearts. As I remember from my leadership training days, the more you connect with hearts and minds, the more people come with you.
We have been full-time in our motorhome for the last five years, travelling through Europe, so very happy to share our experiences with you if that would help. We have a ton of information and are writing a book, so do check in with us if that would help. https://www.motoroaming.com
Yes, that’s so true and I know that it works, because I really enjoy following other bloggers who share other aspects of their lives. However, I’m just not sure it’s the right thing for me and my family. That’s amazing to hear about your motorhome! I am definitely going to check out your blog!
Very interesting post. There are days when I really feel lost without travel to write about. I’ve started collecting recipes of foods I’ve tasted on my trips and sharing that in my blogs as a way of continuing to write about travel. This includes going back to older blogs and enriching them with foodie ideas. It’s a work in progress and don’t know how my traffic will respond. But it gives me something to write about that is focused on travel from a different angle. We’ll see.
That sounds really interesting Ferne! I love reading about the food in different places, as I think that’s such a huge part of travelling.
Im totally on the same page as you – I love writing my travel blog but dont feel comfy framing stories around myself so much! In the end I slowed down how much content I published and well, kinda lost my motivation to blog.
We’re still very restricted but Im feeling al ittle more positive and energised after the xmas/NY break, so trying to look at the blog with fresh eyes and update it a bit. Sorry to hear about your little one being unwell, I hope they’re doing better now?
I’m exactly the same Keri. I really felt like I lost my motivation at the end of last year. But this year I’ve decided to write about the things I want to write about, rather than what I feel I should write about and I feel a bit re-energised. Yes, thank you, my little adventurer is doing really well now and we’re so proud of him!
Yes, I’ve felt the same as you over the last year, and have tried to juggle travel blogging with staying indoors all the time. I had my first baby this Christmas, and am trying to decide how much I want to include her.
Wishing you the best for this year.
We are also buying a camper van. My husband had a 5 year goal to buy one and because of everything that 2020 has been, we decided to do it this year instead of in 4. We are planning to buy one for home to build out instead of a finished one.
I hadn’t considered your blog from this angle before. Of course travel is your content and such a big part of your life! I think your followers will be ok with less content coming our way until the world opens up a bit. Excited about the camper van!! Will you be turning up to Seville in it?? Xxx