Recently my wife Carmen and I wrote about the people who inspire us to travel; my grandfather and her parents. Their early examples sparked a wanderlust in both of us and continues to inform the way we travel. But in the past couple of months we’ve also had the privilege of meeting travel bloggers who have inspired us to take our globe trotting to the next level.
In August we attended the Travel Bloggers Unite conference in Portugal’s beautiful northern city, Porto. We went there as total newcomers, having only launched our blog, Double-Barrelled Travel, in April as a bit of a fun hobby. We wanted to see how we could improve it, maybe meet some like minded people and have a bit of fun.
The keynote address by big time travel bloggers Deb and Dave from The Planet D changed everything. To say they lifted a veil from our eyes would be an understatement. They spoke about not only doing what you love but also making sure it pays. It was sage advice that resonated deeply. They showed you can blog for a living – something we’d not considered too seriously before.
After the flood gates were opened there was no stopping it. Carmen and I split up so we could cover more ground and attended scores of workshops on social media, blog trips, pitching ideas, design, writing and photography – all presented by bloggers at the top of their game and professionals from the travel and communications industries.
They say there has been a digital revolution and we saw this in action. We met a big batch of people who have no fixed address and are roaming the world as digital nomads, working on their laptops and making a home wherever their blogging takes them. A whole new world. We came home with a fresh view, and a to-do list a mile long.
If they can do it, why can’t we? I’ve been a TV and radio journalist for nine years while Carmen’s worked in newspapers and now produces videos for a communications company. So we’ve resolved to make our blog bigger and better (watch this space!) and work hard towards a goal of travelling the world as blogging nomads.
For a bit more inspiration we’ve found a blogger called James Altucher who has run hedge funds in New York but now writes about going it alone and carving his own path in the world. His advice is funny, brutal, off the wall and sometimes utterly bonkers – but nonetheless it’s a kick in the pants to keep going. Also, we’ve been reading an e-book on the kindle called ‘The $100 dollar start up: Fire your boss, Do What You Love and Work Better to Live’ by Chris Guillebeau. He’s another writer describing how it’s possible to break free of the corporate jail.
Boiling it all down, none of this is all that scary. People have been doing this sort of thing since the dawn of time, only the tools are a little different these days. It’s exciting and though we have a lot of challenges to master we’re building momentum every day. Thank you for being on the journey with us.