My New "Support Group"

Posted in Inspiration

As I sit here in my grey cubicle, made even greyer by the icy cold rain that’s been falling all day, I of course can’t help but think of where I’ll be headed in 2012. I’m so excited about the possibilities that are out there, particularly as it relates to continuing my overseas travel and developing a career around doing what I love to do – exploring the world. But it is not just the dreary weather that has my head spinning with ideas on how to maximize my time on the road. It also because of the outstanding group of people I spent about 6 hours with last night.

I had the chance to meet up with a small group of people for dinner and drinks yesterday. The thing we all have in common is that we belong to an amazing online community of (mostly) minority global travelers. Of the group that met last night, I hadn’t known any of them for more than 3 months, and I have only met two of them in person. Still, that didn’t stop us from greeting each other like old friends… we all just “got” each other. Our conversations were not just “have you been to this country” or “what do you think about this airline”. We also got into discussion on how we’re going to capitalize on our dreams, use our skills to further our travel and develop our online presence to allow us to live the lives we want to live without being tied to a location or 9-5.

Of course it is a no-brainer that it is great to spend time with people who share similar passions. But the thing that really stood out to me was the near frenzy of ideas and suggestions that we shared with each other. For a group that could easily see each other as competition, there was nothing but openness and enthusiastic encouragement. It’s so much easier to generate ideas and find solutions to problems when you’re not on your guard. It’s not rocket science that secrecy breeds secrecy and openness breeds openness. There’s no need for competition when we’re all ready to work together and help each other move forward.

Sometimes I find myself wondering “How many Black travel writers/bloggers does the world truly need”. With so many established minority writers on the scene, is there really any room for me? Well the answer is yes! Why not? Did Halle Barry ask if the world needed another black female actress even though Angela Bassett was already up on the silver screen? Did Toni Morrison think that writing from the Black female perspective had already been “done” by Maya Angelou? Of course not!

As long as you’re doing what you’re passionate about, there’s room for you. Each person will add their own flavor to whatever it is they do. From the group last night, one woman is using her yoga teaching experience as a vehicle to travel and volunteer overseas. Another is focusing on her talents as an on air personality. Another guy has traveled to over 240 countries (and counting) through his acting skills while building his reputation as a social media guru. All of us share a common interest, but each of us will make it our own. I am truly inspired by the community as a whole (which has grown to nearly 1000 members in just a few months) and in particular by those who sat around the dinner table last night at the LA “think tank”. Thank you guys!

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11 Comments... Read them below or add one of your own
  • TastyKeish December 13, 2011, 7:57 am

    Thank you and everyone else for the inspiration and motivation. I couldn’t have said it any better thank you just did sis!

  • Nailah December 13, 2011, 8:36 am

    So glad you happend to be out on the West Coast to take part…good timing my friend!

  • Marcus Lovingood December 13, 2011, 9:17 am

    Inspiring words, lovely! Talents that transcend being!

  • Angela Myers December 13, 2011, 12:28 pm

    Love this!!! I wasn’t even there and I’m feeling encouraged/inspired/motivated to continue chasing my dream of traveling for a living. I’m excited for everyone and can’t wait to see what dreams are made reality with the support of our new group of friends!

  • Nailah December 13, 2011, 9:05 pm

    Thanks so much, Marcus & Angela! I really appreciate the support.

  • brian December 14, 2011, 3:01 am

    Great post! If I was a week later I would have met up with all of you. Definitely hit me up when you’re on the East Coast.

  • Nailah December 14, 2011, 7:30 am

    I for sure will, Brian. You have to show me around the Bronx!

  • April D. Thompson December 14, 2011, 10:07 pm

    Left LA a bit too soon. Glad you guys got together and had a blast! Love it!

  • Nailah December 14, 2011, 11:27 pm

    Definitley missed having you there, April. If it wasn’t for you, i wouldn’t have even known about this group!

  • hello jack December 27, 2011, 7:12 am

    really loved this post, amazonas 🙂 esp. your line: “As long as you’re doing what you’re passionate about, there’s room for you. Each person will add their own flavor to whatever it is they do.”–totally motivational in its message of perseverance!

    -jackie

  • Nailah December 27, 2011, 8:40 pm

    Jackie! Thanks for stopping by for a read. Great to hear from you again. I followed the link to your design page – I had no idea you were doing this type of work! Really impressive images of your design and furniture line (www.hellojackdesign.com). Man, I have some talented friends!

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