My Dreams, The Catch; My Fears, The Cage

Don’t live your life out of fear,” I whisper to myself quietly.

“Don’t live your life out of fear,” I repeat again trying to convince myself of its meaning while wrapped in my cozy blanket, protecting myself from the penetrating cold and darkness that is this November morning.

“Don’t live your life out of fear,” I now speak firmly to myself, one last time with conviction, providing enough energy to get myself out of bed, a real struggle this particular day.

Don’t live your life out of fear is a mantra I have written on my mirror, where I can read it and repeat it when in desperate need.  Lately thought, it’s been used much like a whore, repeatedly and often.

Why is this relevant to my blog post? You may find yourself inquiring. The relevance is that this mantra is what has inspired me to start blogging.

“Oh great, another [insert expletive here] blogger!” you say.

Yea, for the longest time, I agreed with you. Why does the world need another blogger who wants to interject their cynical views on the wide world of the internet explorers?

“Who would want to read my posts? Who cares what I have to say?” the fear continued to keep these conversations alive in my head. For the longest time I believed my inner critics. There is nothing relevant that I have to say. No one will read my blogs. People will judge me. It will be an absolute failure. Then I started to realize that my reason for blogging isn’t for other people. It’s actually just for me.

The finished magazine, Citizen Philadelphia

Back in my undergrad at Philadelphia University, for my graduation project, I created a magazine and website called Citizen Philadelphia, a media source to spotlight local, national and global philanthropic projects and the inspiring people behind them. From concept development to a finalized, published magazine and website took four months of non-stop design, writing, photographing, tinkering, thinking, living, breathing, dreaming Citizen Philadelphia. I enjoyed the whole process, the development of the brand, the conceptual design of each aspect of the magazine and website, interviewing the people around which I wrote the stories and compiling it all into one finished product. It was the culmination of everything I learned at Philadelphia University.

It. Was. My. Baby.

A spread of a map of Philadelphia and pull out graphics/captions for different neighborhoods featured in the magazine.

After graduation, I tried to keep it going, yet found myself stuck. Stuck financially, and halted by the fear of failure, the fear of not making it a success. Looking back I question my idea of success. Was success defined as people reading my posts, creating articles that were relevant in the current place and time, or getting notoriety for capturing inspiring projects and the minds behind them?  What defines success? Who defines it?

These are the questions now,  in hindsight, of which I feel I have a better grasp on, an understanding.  It is all me. Literally, me. I define my success, my failures, my lessons learned. I can make it positive, negative or neutral. It is all in how I want to define it.

This blogging that I will be working on, it is all for me. It is to extend, and redefine my vision of Citizen Philadelphia and establish a basis for which to start a travel blog.

So in essence, fuck you.

Fuck your opinions, your criticisms, your praise, anything having to do with you. You can read it. You may wish to not read it. I don’t give a fuck. All I know is, I am chronicling my adventures, my connections with people, places and things— all for me.

Looking back, this has been a work in progress for years, with all of my explorations, travelings, adventures and mishaps. Now it has a place and a purpose.

Financially, yea, I still don’t have any money, but that won’t stop me. I have my camera, my words and my vision— my vision of bringing my adventures and pictures to life and give it some kind of purpose.

If you continue to keep reading my blogs, enjoy. If you don’t, no worries. It wasn’t meant for you anyways.

I’m finally putting an end to living my life out of fear and listening to my inner critics, especially in terms of making my travel writing dreams a reality.

“Don’t live your life out of fear,” reassuring myself softly, while hovering the mouse over the PUBLISH button. One last gasp as I settle with the idea. “Don’t live your life out of —