2 February 2015

Why I adore blogging (February's Travel Linkup)

Lets be a little frank here - some days I'm pretty sure that I appear to be a disgustingly enthusiastic puppy. I don't exhibit the infamous British reserve but tend to gush with delight at something I enjoy with the excitement of a Labrador with a bucket full of tennis balls. And y'know, I'm ok with that. I've always been an 'all or nothing' kind of person, and always wanted to write the kind of blog that I loved reading; a quirky, passionate diary of adventures both large and small.

Why I adore blogging (February's Travel Linkup) - Adventures of a London Kiwi

But when setting up my little corner of the internet I didn't realise quite the affect that having a blog addiction would have on my life. Living in New Zealand I always felt a little stifled. Nothing nasty, just that there was something big and crazy in the world waiting for me to discover. Cue arriving in London, beginning to explore this wonderful city, getting boring and taking it for granted before realising that I was the thing that was wrong all along. I didn't appreciate my home or take advantage of any opportunities I had. Blogging was a self-propelled kick-up-the-pants.

Why I adore blogging (February's Travel Linkup) - Adventures of a London Kiwi

Community
I blummin' love the blogging community. We're very lucky here that the London blogging/expat community is pretty actively sociable. From enormous luxurious afternoon teas to emotional coffee drinking blates, the blogging community by and large are lovely, supportive, chatty, friendly and only too happy to share great things they've found with each other and the world (and you know who you are). I've been lucky enough to make a plethora of crazy mates through blogging - exactly what the Dr ordered for an expat - how can that not be awesome?

Funnily enough at a dinner the other night a few of us were chatting about blogging and it's controversial place in the big bad community of journalism. One of the freelance travel writers for big name broadsheets posed the idea that blogging is a small bubble community of highly interactive bloggers who learn off each other, feed off each other, interact with each other and have an incredibly niche platform to share with the world? I'm actually perfectly ok with that (though as a sidenote they didn't account for the other 99% of readers who don't feel the need to leave comments and aren't bloggers). Why shouldn't there be a hugely supportive community of creative addicts who have an outlet above and beyond their boring day to day duties? (nb. We're totally not a cult even taking into account our scone addictions, weird amusement about ridiculous hashtags and slightly crazy squeals of excitement when meeting each other by accident in person).


Why I adore blogging (February's Travel Linkup) - Adventures of a London Kiwi

Confidence
I'm a totally different person compared to the mouse who walked in my wide shoes 3 years ago.  There is something incredibly freeing about finding your voice, learning to shape your opinions and the highly addictive game of researching. You learn to tell a story, appreciate the good along with the bad, make some lovely friends who share your hobbies, are able to make recommendations and have a crash course in grammar that'll improve every single thing you do. Walking into a room of blogging strangers is wonderful as they literally have a plethora weird addictions usually very similar to your own, so why be nervous? I've also learned how to admit mistakes, apologise, be gracious, that envy is stupid, you need to make luck, to have patience, dedication is important and that wise men learn from being a fool (which is in no way dig at anyone but my very foolish younger self). I've also learnt that you are your very own worst enemy. Be brave. Be strong. Have fun. The haters will only be chewing their own liver as they watch you enjoy life.

Creativity
I can't draw, I can't paint, I can't play an instrument in front of an audience and I can't put together an outfit to save my life. I have however discovered a love of photography, that I can usually sufficiently express myself through writing and can hack blogger widgets like a pro. I've also discovered a joy in food flavours that turned my plain jane kitchen spice shelf into a wander through exotic climes I never knew existed. Sure, some of those containers are half-used and wait dustily for another day of glory but hey, I've used them at least once to tart up a boring meal.

Why I adore blogging (February's Travel Linkup) - Adventures of a London Kiwi

Inspiration (oh goodness how I wish I could have found an alliterative companion to my earlier list entries - there's another reason I love blogging - learning lightening quick searching skills on search engines and the thesaurus that's a constantly resourced companion).
Where does this particular corner of blogging begin or end? I guess it's an inherent part of every aspect of this addiction that makes me smile from ear to ear (again, I repeat, we are not a cult.) I like to set myself writing challenges that would make my cheese-loving high school English teacher's heart implode. I do sometimes wonder if the way I have to have some kind of goal/challenge/object/place to excitedly share is some form of attention-seeking addiction problem - but it's a pretty healthy version of attempting to overachieve, right?

Why I adore blogging (February's Travel Linkup) - Adventures of a London Kiwi

I could go on (and often do, one of the joys of being a blog CEO) - I've discovered that karma really is a wonderful b*tch, blogging can literally take you on a journey of discovery, enough is as good as a feast, nothing you ever do will be perfect and Twitter is an amazing black hole for time. Oh, did I mention the travel tips? Name me a country or a city and if I can't point you to a blog that shares insider tips, one of my lovely friends will definitely be able to. We've discovered so many beautiful cities both in the UK and abroad as a direct result of reading blogs, that it isn't funny.


In short, blogging is as a demanding mistress as you want her to be, but incredibly lovely, worth every minute. So, how about you? Have there been unexpected benefits of blogging to your life?

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40 comments :

  1. Loved everything about this post, Emma! Your themes of "community" and "confidence" especially resonated with me. xo

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  2. There is so much in this post that I identify with. The whole time I was shaking my head up and down and smiling. As much as blogging drives me crazy sometimes, at the end of the day, I'm really glad I've stuck with it over the past four years!


    This was such a good idea for prompt! You guys think of the best things to write about - I can't wait to join in next month! (I'll finally be caught up with all our past travels, yay!)

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  3. I've just read your post and wanted to have written it as it's perfect!

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  4. Thank you so much - you are too kind. This was a great topic!

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  5. It's that whole puppy analogy - just perfection :)

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  6. You are just so sweet and kind and enthusiastic that it makes my heart bubble with joy. xx

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  7. Elizabeth Harding2 February 2015 at 11:55

    Yes! tha blogging community is great - probably my favourite part about the whole blogging experience! I love that I have blogger friends all over the world now too!

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  8. Shikha (whywasteannualleave)2 February 2015 at 16:29

    Totally agree with a lot of this Emma, especially confidence, I think blogging has definitely improved mine - actually, I'd say it's still a work in progress but it's pretty cathartic in many ways I find :)

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  9. I love this post and totally agree with your points! I started blogging years ago, but quit for awhile until a few months ago. I think I was always aware of the benefits of blogging, but they became even more apparent once I quit! I missed the community and I missed creating. I feel like blogging challenges me, inspires me, puts me more in touch with myself, and helps my entire world to grow. It's a weird but wonderful thing and I'm happy to be back at it!

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  10. Spot on with confidence, I don't think I realised it but it is a massive benefit! How many of our friends walk into a room with 24 people they don't know to have lunch with them!

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  11. Ditto what Anna said! I can still remember walking into that restaurant meeting all you kiwi ladies the first time; it was a blessing and torture at the same time ;-) xx

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  12. Great post! I so agree that the blogging community it really a wonderful thing - it's partly what makes blogging so enjoyable for me :) xxx

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  13. The blogging community is amazing! I don't think a day goes by that I don't communicate with another blogger! The events can be intimidating but it's definitely a great way of building confidence and meeting people!

    Lots of love,
    Angie
    SilverSpoon London

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  14. Emma, it was so nice to meet you at the tea and looking forward to chatting more next time. Really nice that blogging has even inspired you to use more food flavours, the knock on effects are amazing!

    Suze | LuxuryColumnist

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  15. I've loved reading about different perspectives on the benefits of blogging. Everyone has their own stories about how they have changed since they started.


    For me, I think it's having more of an outlet to talk about the things I'm passionate about. And having to learn new things all the time means it can be very rewarding.

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  16. Such wonderful reasons to love blogging! I wish we had the awesome meet ups you guys have in London! Blogging really has inspired me and been a wonderful creative outlet that I never knew I would enjoy so much!

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  17. What a lovely post! I found myself nodding along while reading this, so true! Blogging is also what reawakened my love of phography, blogging and my love of travel basically feed off each other. The community here in Zurich isn't as awesome as the one in London lots of teeny boppers playing at being fashion blogger and not very much else, but nevertheless I have met some cool people through my blog! (and some cray cray ones, but let's set that aside ;-))

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  18. So well written, especially the confidence bit! I love hearing where your blog has taken you, because you've had some of the most random experiences because of it, either offered to you, or you went out and sought them out.

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  19. Me too. Some of my closest real life friends have been made through blogging.

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  20. This was such a good Emma, every point I totally agree with especially the creative part, it really helps with the creative juices!

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  21. This was one of the best posts I read about this topic. Super interested in this idea of this blogging, interactive community that we create. I like the idea of it being interactive.

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  22. Oooh, I've really enjoyed reading every ones' posts on this topic. There's just so many great reasons. Of yours I pick confidence, that's a huge thing for me and I've never felt more confident in my life that I do right now and I put that down to blogging! Also, just getting out and doing stuff, I wouldn't be half as inclined to get off the sofa if I didn't have my blog!

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  23. It is amazing isn't it - a hobby where you spend a bit of time in front of a computer actually conversely gets us all out & about more. Any excuse!

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  24. Awww, that's too kind Holly! I just love it!!

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  25. Doesn't it just - the daily/weekly challenge of expressing yourself is fab!

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  26. Ditto - we're all crazy, have similar imterests and Twitter addictions - perfecto!

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  27. The most random is right! Wait until you hear what we have planned this year... ;)

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  28. Give Zurich time to blossom :) We're super excited to pop by for coffee in May!

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  29. Are there many Icelandic bloggers?
    Next time you're in London...!

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  30. I'm always so awed at the breadth of posts that come out of one itty bitty topic!

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  31. It was so lovely to meet you! The knock on effects are myriad!

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  32. Isn't it just? There is the odd moment, but for the majority of time it's welcoming, supportive and inspiring. What more could you wish for?

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  33. Isn't it just so incredible how a hobby that parks your butt behind a screen has so many positive real life ramifications?

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  34. Confidence is a funny intangible thing at times - I for one love your blog!

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  35. A South Wales Blog22 February 2015 at 17:52

    I really enjoyed reading this and totally agree with everything you've said, the bloggin community is ace and has totally upd my confidence!

    Ffion
    asouthwalesblog.com

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