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After a year of reflection and change, I have a big announcement about Austrian Adaptation and where we’re headed in 2019. Read on below for the details…
Is everyone else still slowly emerging from their hibernation pods from the start of the year a little bit dazed and hazy? Somehow we’re more than halfway through January and I’m still burrowing out of the cosy pod I’d built for myself on our living room couch.
But the break has been good – the space and silence and blessed time to think, reflect and look back on what a year 2018 was, and what 2019 could and should be.
Anyone who’s been following the blog for a while (Hey there! Thanks heaps!) will know I’ve been percolating on different ideas and directions for this site and platform a while now. A mini-identity crisis if you like.
Way back in 2017 I was asking So you’re a travel blogger, how’s that working out? In 2018, I was trying out more opinion pieces like ‘Stop asking women ‘What, are you pregnant’ and ‘How we’re living more sustainably’ alongside more reviews and practical articles.
Then, all across Instagram stories at the end of last year I’ve been running polls and quizzes to find out from you guys what kind of content and articles you’d like more of and also what would bring the most joy and motivation from my side.
Because the truth is, I’ve outgrown the original purpose of ‘Austrian Adaptation’ as we know it.
Since moving to Vienna in 2012, and starting the blog in 2013 as a little creative outlet, it has shifted from being an expat blog about the struggles of adapting, getting married for a visa and the hilarious cultural discoveries made along the way, to something more.
Nowdays, I have my bearings, I can understand Viennese accents, I know where to get the best coffee (duh, GOTA) and, naturally, my interests and goals have changed in the meantime.
These days, my recommendations about Vienna are loved and shared not only here on the blog and across our communities social channels, but across media publications like Lonely Planet, Forbes Travel, Touringbird, Matador Network and more.
So it’s getting legit, and while that’s all insanely good and something to be grateful for, it also means I have a responsibility to write with care and thoughtfulness about destinations and ways to travel.
On top of my interests changing and growing, the blogging game and *shudder* influencer industry has changed a hell of a lot since 2013.
Now there are cookie cutter travel images everywhere, (see @Instarepeat below as the best, most cringe hilarious example) and there are more so-called travel bloggers out there than you can poke a stick at.
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As a consequence, overtourism is a severe and very real issue across a swathe of destinations, and the responsibility of the individual traveller and content creators to be honest and authentic is becoming more important.
All of these factors have had me reconsidering the blog purpose and goals for the future.
You might have noticed things got pretty quiet around here with only a smattering of posts towards the end of the year (or not, maybe you were elbow deep in Gluwein and cookies, which I 100% support).
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Last Christmas looking post I swear – an over the shoulder farewell to the party season, to twinkling lights and to all that 2018 was. I’m quietly excited for the year ahead, trying to focus on that little inner voice telling me to go deeper, get more creative and follow my instincts instead of the trends or things people say you ‘have to do’ to be successful. In 2019, I want success on my own terms. That means: . . – Working towards my personal creative goals, not a completely random threshold number of followers 💫 . . – Building balance into my days, allowing time to cook, rest and be at home instead of 50-60 hour work weeks like the last 5 years🥞 . . – Working in sync with my cycle thanks to everything I’ve learned from @_clairebaker_ 🙇🏼♀️ . . – Speaking out more from my experience working in the male dominated travel industry for 10 years, and very male startup scene for 5 years 🙈💪🏼 . . – Creating more. Consuming less..🌱 . . – No more alcohol for the forseeable future.🍷Moving more. Savoring mornings 🦋 . . These are goals that resonate for where I’m at right now. They don’t need to be yours, they don’t judge your choices. So tell me – what does success look like to you right now? . . . #wien #vienna #austria #mindfullness #2019goals #sinceresuccess #igersvienna #visitvienna #viennanow #living_europe #wienliebe #viennacity #welovevienna #lovevienna #viennablogger #viennaonly #austrianblogger #wonderlustvienna #communityfirst #igerswien #igersaustria #discovervienna #viennagram #tbapresets
That silence was necessary, and gave space for re-centring what value I can offer, thinking about what values I want to embody and stand for, and questioning how to enable the site to grow into the best possible place to come for local, responsible, insider advice about Vienna and beyond.
So, as my lovely newsletter subscribers already had hints of in the recent newsletter (ya gotta subscribe here if you want the inside word), for 2019 I’m committing to a focus that will hopefully serve you guys, while also providing the creative scope for travelling on my terms and speaking my mind more often.
Slow travel & living in Vienna will be the focus of Austrian Adaptation moving forward.
What does that mean in practical terms? To be honest, it will simply be a refined focus on the topics that really matter most, and that you guys have said you want more of.
To be more specific, I’ll be writing;
- More Vienna brunch, hotel and restaurant reviews
- More personal lifestyle and opinion pieces
- Travel guides for smaller, local European destinations with a focus on slow travel & sustainability
- Spotlighting some of the best local small businesses and creative entrepreneurs in Vienna
- Sharing unique experiences in Austria & beyond for smart, twenty-to-thirty-somethings with a creative spirit, who love good coffee & brunch spots
I’d been having a really hard time pinning all of the above down in a succinct way. Capturing the things that I believe in and want to help promote – local experiences, sustainability, responsible travel, going beyond the touristy highlights of Vienna – because they were all very wordy and vague.
Then like a ‘no-duh’ lightbulb, it hit me.
Slow travel & living really encapsulates what I believe in, try to embody and want to share discussions about as I learn more about it.
Whether it’s exploring Austria to understand the cultural traditions or the history of a coffee shop, or when travelling abroad, choosing to take the train instead of a flight, slow travel is the philosophy that best resonates with my personal style of travel and beliefs.
So, I have a lot of ideas, experience and mouthy opinions on these topics, that I feel should be brought to the discussion.
I’ll be going into more detail of the exact definition of what slow travel means and how you can make small changes to embrace it soon, but wanted to loop you guys into this shift and give you the chance to ask any questions, as well as letting you know what to expect in the coming weeks and months.
As always, I love hearing from you all and will always be committed to creating useful, relatable articles, videos and ridiculous Instagram stories that will make your time in Vienna and beyond special.
Only now, we’ll be bringing slow travel and living into the blend to really give some purpose and bigger picture impact to the advice.
Of course, if that’s not your jam, that’s fine too!
Everyone is sorting through their own life bizness, so do what you feel – if these topics don’t resonate for you, then maybe this isn’t quite the right community for you, and that’s ok.
But if you like finding brunch spots on your travels and in your hometown, want to find more local experiences, and are interested to come along as I try and figure out what slow travel & living really means, then stick around. We’re going to have a pretty awesome 2019 I think…..
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