The essence of traveling

Have you ever heard of that question “If you weren’t able share it on Social Media or take any pictures, would you still plan your trip the same way?”?

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Me in the Blue Mountains, Australia

I’ve been thinking about that a lot lately. I haven’t been as active on my Instagram as I used to be, which is obviously also due to the fact that I have a job now and work 9-6 every day. But it’s also because I enjoy my time off my phone. I enjoy not thinking about taking the perfect Instagram photo. Because that’s not what life should be about.

I remember last year (around one year after I started my blog) I went to Chile to go to a friend’s wedding and travel around with a few of my friends and it was one of the nicest trips I’ve had. But I caught myself thinking every once in a while “Oh shit, what will I write about on my blog? I need more photos! We need to do more exciting things I can write about!” and right when those thoughts popped into my mind, I had to stop and appreciate the place I was in right now. I was in Chile, with some great friends that I barely get to see anymore since they live in Hamburg. And I shouldn’t have to worry about something like that.
I started this blog when I started my MA in Journalism and PR because I knew it would be good practice and because I always wanted to do it. But I soon realised that no matter how fun it was, I didn’t want it to become a huge thing and a full-time job. Because I travel mainly to see a country, to meet people, to have a time out from reality. And you can’t get that time out when reality and traveling melt into each other.

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Lord Howe Island, Australia

I get very jealous of people who live the dream: their office is wherever they choose it to be, no matter if it’s the beach, a café in a vibrant city or the hostel reception. Of people, that get paid to travel, because they write about it or take photos of their trips. But then I have to remind myself how bad I get at taking pictures when I’m enjoying a situation. How I love to just be one with the nature or the people I’m with and not constantly capture the situation in photographs or written words.

And this – by no means – is meant to downgrade all the people who chose that lifestyle, because, like already mentioned above, I envy you. I just know that I wouldn’t be good at it. I wouldn’t appreciate it enough and I would feel under too much pressure to succeed and to publish good content.

So maybe sometimes, we should just leave our phone, camera, gopro or whatever at home when we go off the wander the streets of the place we just landed in. Just for a day. To really feel the energy of the place. To really capture wonderful moments, not with a camera but with our minds.

Because we should plan our trips regardless of things we can post on Social Media. Because the essence of traveling is to dive into new worlds, to step out of your comfort zone and to enjoy life to the fullest.

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some situations are just too surreal not to photograph though (Lord Howe Island, Australia)

#stopbullying and #noslutshaming: How bad Social Media can be and what we can do about it

I just finished a book called Asking for it. And the hashtag #notaskingforit was just trending in Germany a few months ago, after a celebrity was at court over a video of her having sex with two men appeared online  – and clearly showed her saying “no” multiple times. (If you are German or know any german, you should read this article by one of my favourite bloggers.) And then there’s the Netflix documentary Audrie and Daisy about young girls that are being sexually abused. And obviously there’s , a new Netflix show I’ve only watched a few episodes of, but I already kind of know where this is heading.
But what I want to talk about today isn’t only the fact that society tries to tell girls that sexual assault is their fault if they choose to wear short skirts and show a bit of cleavage (which is bullshit by the way).But it’s the victim blaming itself that often follows after attacks. The bullying that makes the mental impact of the attack even worse. (Watch the new Netflix show 13 Reasons Why, which deals with that topic and the consequences, if you haven’t already.)

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Just the other day I was researching for a radio show we did for college and stumbled upon Essena O’Neill again, who you’ve probably all heard of. This 19 year old Australian girl, who quit Instagram and all other Social Media networks because she said it’s not real life. And when researching a bit more, I found so many websites and articles about that topic and about those millions of #goals comments on Instagram. And it made me think.

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