Slow Down darling, you are doing fine.

Personal opinion. Not based on any studies or scholar research.

TikTok is too fast for my Millennial brain to keep up. I deleted my account a couple of weeks ago. I also landed on the complaining side of TikTok , which started to look a lot with Twitter, but with visual-audio content. Not for me. Not anymore.

It’s probably because of having to rewatch it a few times to understand whats being said, that content creators on that platform has that huge amount of views. The millennials that has to watch at least 3 times to understand what is going on. Reels creators are just speeding up too. 

Butterfly in the sky, I can go twice as high.. 

Reels is a copycat from TikTok, we are all well aware of that. Mr. Zuckerberg, as usual, wants a a piece of the pie, and why not copying the format and transforming the entire app, in a video app, where they algorithm determines how many videos you have to post a day, in order to go viral? Its all computer science and data analyzes, if you follow exactly what they are telling you, you will succeed. Maybe.

 

Ciao, Bella.

 

I have a hard time following those micro-vlogs. Where they are and why they have to have .05 second frames to show the gelato, the square, the flimsy dress while holding the gelato, the gondola, followed by a caption that says “Ciao, Bella” all that in 15 seconds. I can’t tell you if you are in Italy or The Venetian, in Las Vegas. Instead of rushing, why not show a nice restaurant I could visit, parts of a museum, or how the locals live? It always seems we are in a rush. 

Every frame has to be perfect calculated, on a video editing app, using the viral audio, everyone else is using, with the predicted fonts and filters. It’s all generic and it’s exhausting.  

“Slow down, you are doing fine.”

Thats not me. 🤣

Not too long ago, I read an article about slow content. The manifest has 10 pillars with different items to cover. The article talks about how Quality X Quantity doesn’t matter, when it comes to this rush to sell , promote or inform. We are not made to engage in this algorithm driven society. I read an article this week, on Medium, written by Lisa Marten, where she writes about us defying the algorithm. Make it work for us, because if we keep adapting, we are all going to be replaced by machines.

Try to connect more, instead of posting content like a slot machine. 

My channel logo made on Canva. 

I wrote all that, because I came to the conclusion, that someone or the driven business society, are trying to dump on us this rush madness amount of content, in less than 1 minute, because they realized this generation can’t focus on anything, or have the attention for more than a few minutes. Remember, machines did that to the people’s brain, in the past 10 years.

The analytics scholars trained those brains into thinking that faster is better. Year after year. You can’t waste time on a 1 minute video, when you have another 200 videos to watch. 

I remember when I had to wait for my song to play on the radio, so I could recorded. I’m also from the early 2000’s MTV generation, when you also had to wait and see if your favorite video was going to be on TRL and what position. 

Pillar number 6 : Happiness over Financial 

Our new youtube channel!

Purpose over profit. My purpose with my content, on my fairly new youtube channel is to show a more connected way to engage, while visiting a new city, or a different place. Anthony Bourdain school of traveling. All lights to the heavens and respect to the master. Oh Captain, my Captain. 

The blog has more of a serious tone, and it goes more in depths of my life as an immigrant, than showcasing Colorado small towns, while eating my way around it. 

I write this blog as a manifesto and documentation of my life here in the United Sates. The channel is more upbeat and less chaotic than my mental immigrant issues.  

Don’t stop doing what you love to fit the trends.

Don’t stop doing what you love to fit the trends. Use the audio you like, the filter and the caption you want. Stop trying to fit in, and run on the hamster wheel. We need more creative minds and people exploring different sides of themselves. You know how many times a day I saw people dancing “About Damn time” by Lizzo on TikTok? Thousands. Who got richer? Her, well deserved, great marketing. Who wasted their time  and now hates the song? Me. 

And probably you. 

It was a song about empowerment,  female body positivity, until Paris Hilton, the Human barbie form itself, ended the trend. I got a good laugh of all that and deleted my account. Might be back on a different time. 

I have to say it out loud so the people in the back can hear me:

There is nothing wrong in being creative and take a different approach on your content. Think outside the box. If you don’t fit in on the algorithm, tough. Let the AI work harder. People that like you, will follow you, for your content, because it’s you and not a successful account with a huge following on TikTok.

Hopefully, the Slow Content movement, will bring it back the joy of watching longer videos. Just like the minimalist trend, by Marie Kondo a few years ago. When we started the year cleaning the house  with a vengeance, from what bring us joy and whatnot. 

Hopefully, the slow content will also bring back the following for the people and not for what the industry are trying to sell you.  

Here is the website I found with the Slow Content Pillars:

https://slowcontent.org/

Let me know in the comments what do you think of the slow content movement, and what generational advice you have for the younger folks in terms of taking it slow. 

 

How to write for a travel outlet

 

How to write for a travel outlet publication? I’m still trying to find out for the past 15 years.

During Tourism and hospitality college, I spent countless hours at the library reading Travel Magazines. At that point, while living in Brazil, my dream and life goals were to travel and write to one of those magazines. Not to be stuck in a hotel for the next 15 years, at the front desk, dealing with people traveling all over the world. I should be the one traveling!

I was never meant to get roots behind the desk.

How to write for a travel magazine? Asking for a friend

My favorite magazine at that time was Lonely Planet. It contained the travel guides, which I pretty much became obsessed with and promised myself, someday I would be one of those cool travel writers. I would write the article, take amazing photographs and leave like a Nomad. I just found out they have nomad visas now, since some people are working remotely full time!

At that time, I was also checking the possibility of being a photographer for the National Geo magazine. Little silly 20 years old me with big dreams, living in Brazil. That was way before we have internet access and all this cool things that the technology gave us.

One day I stared a blog to talk about my internship programs abroad, which I carefully and ruthlessly named “Where the hell is Joana?”

“Where the hell is Joana?”

The blog “Where The hell is Joana?” was to write about my experiences abroad, during the 3 months I was out of my country, for the first time ever, while living in North Carolina. My first mistake was: I decided to write in Portuguese, because my vocabulary at that time was rough and kept to a bare minimum.

When I wrote my first post and send it to my mom, she didn’t like it. She wrote me on msn messenger (yes, that long ago) and told me to not expose her or my dad. Nobody needed to know our personal life. I didn’t mean in any way to expose them, its not like they were celebrity rock starts and I was about to drop a major gossip on them.

I just wanted to write!

My dream job in my early 20’s

I would move on to my own adventures in short time. I just get drowned. I tried others posts, but my writing was confusing and random, as I focused more on the plugins and photos than my pieces I was writing itself. I tried again and reactivate the blog during the other internships, until I quit BlogSpot all together in 2009.

No shame on that. Years and years later, the writing got better. After all, this is my second language, I was  born and raised and for my entirely life, Portuguese is my first language.

Life has a funny way to go around.

First I had to learn how to write fictional pieces, learn how to put a storyline, characters arc and development in perspective, until I could actually write non fiction with more confidence.

Again, I always wanted to write travel magazine articles, but for that I needed to learn how to tell a story. I still don’t have a magazine writing job, but I’m thankful we have blogs now. I’m also thankful for being able to document my travels on Youtube. It’s all taking place now.

Blogs and Youtube videos run on the same expectation of being heard and seen, but due to people’s lack of attention, my Youtube travel content is going much better than the blog has ever been. I’ve been learning a lot, especially about SEO and algorithm, so I will write a post about it, probably in the next week.

TRVLS & Comida – Youtube Channel

It’s all in the air now.

I’m working on some youtube shorts, since we are working full time and can travel all time

Maybe I had to go around for a few years or many years before I was able to pursue my long life dream of telling stories while traveling. Maybe some day I will get financed to write my web series, If I ever sit down to write it.

It’s all in the air now. Things actually work, you just have to be patient. And no, you are never too old to pursue your dream. Yes, I get that we can’t just drop everything and focus only on what we’d like doing it. We have bills to pay. (most of us has anyway. Trust fund kids, no)

Hang in there.  It will get better.

See you next week!

JS

XXX

Fierce Living out loud too. Or at least trying to.

From time to time, I get to reevaluate why do I have this blog and my path to get where I’m today. It changed a lot, but one of the things that it hasn’t changed was the purpose.

Like the Titanic Engine, my brain is fuming and its max capacity.

My brain being bilingual

I’m out here, constantly learning how to navigate and live in a different culture that I didn’t grow up in, while I attempt to live a normal life. I dream in two languages and my brain is fuming like the Titanic engine. I get zero breaks.

The purpose of this blog is not to talk about me personally. It’s to talk about my experiences as an immigrant, in a constantly mid 30’s crisis, and with what I’m going through, find some people that can resonate with my experiences. I’m not an expert in anything.

I don’t have the authority to teach people how to do this or that, since I’m still living my life as best as I can.

Trying to be an influential blogger posing with my mug.

I could teach the younger generation how to work hard and chase dreams, but I’m still working on mine. Teach them how cool it was not to have a phone and be monitored by other people 24 hours a day.

You could just leave and walk around, without being disturbed by a thousand different media outlets. These days we carry a personal computer in our pockets. There was a time when to reply to emails, I had to sit down turn on my computer, wait for the internet to connect, and pray for nobody to pick up the phone and disconnect me.

The point is, I don’t have any authority in any subject. So I write about my struggles to get connections.

Disney Springs

I remember when I first started this blog, the idea behind was to simplify it call it “Live out loud”, because at that time I was still going through a Creative Writing bachelor’s degree and how writing in a second language, in the same level of a born and raised American was a daily challenge.

Writing about my assignments and the difficulty to fit in in the world of a writer was already hard by itself, having to explain that English is my second language was the real struggle. Even so with this being very difficult, I was still prompt to live my life out loud too.

I’m still doing my best to Live Out Loud Too

“Live out loud too” meant that at that moment I felt like I need to showcase my writing abilities, at the same time sharing my experiences as an immigrant. When I graduate the blog took a turn to a more serious tone of “why don’t I fit in?” when I moved to Austin, Texas.

Being in the south again, after living in Chicago, brought back memories of those years I was an outcast.

Living in Georgia for four years, meant I had to be on tiptoes constantly, explaining where I came from and what was I doing in America, why I didn’t want to stay in Brazil, and how peculiar my accent was. Southern hospitality is a lie. I even watched youtube videos on how to manage my accent and sound like a true American.

Yes, those videos are there for you to learn how to fake your accent. Just forget your first language and mimic the sound of the words. When you work in a place that is constantly harassing you for your “Language Barrier”, and giving better tables to people who speaks more fluent, you tend to get desperate.

When I moved to Chicago, it was fine. When I moved to Texas, even on my stop in Dallas, I already felt the burn of being back in the south.

 

on my way to Austin, 2019. 

The blog helps me personally and it has been a big part of what I love doing it. Writing and sharing stories about being an immigrant, in a constantly changing world.

After a time, with some comments and talking with friends, I realized that what I feel is not only immigrants’ perks. Americans and other people abroad feel the same way I do.

“Do it for the Gram.”

Some of the mid 30’s I know are also in a constant crisis, because we couldn’t keep up with what has been asked of us. Rent, bill, eat right, pandemic, work being a good wife, being a good mom, being a good employee, being a good friend. Look good for the Gram, have some special skills, like something artistic. Have a podcast, have a blog, write in the journal, go to therapy. Travel, showcase, eat outpost gorgeous places. When do we take breaks?

We all have dreams that we would love to make true, but we have to battle with the day to day life. Social media doesn’t make it any easier either. The feeling of constantly being left behind is real and it doesn’t mean you are not doing enough.

You are probably doing more than is asked of you and getting exhausted in the process. Believe, I’m too. We all are. While I’m still trying to Live out Loud too.

Trying to dance to my favorite song, watch my favorite movie for the 1000th time, try to bake bread that never raises. That’s how I live out loud too. Doing little things that make me happy and living my life the best I can.

While being an immigrant, while being in my 30’s without a promising career, without any funds to one day purchase a house. Life is here and now and one of the things I learned with the pandemic is that you cannot wait for tomorrow or next week to start doing things you like. Or you are at risk to be stranded in your house for years to come, while they try to “Flatten the Curve”.

Last but not least, Live out Loud too means acceptance. You have the right to live your life as it pleases you, as loud as you can.

No one on this planet has the right to judge you or tell you how to live. Or hurt you because you don’t act like them, don’t look like them, or don’t talk like them. To hell, these people keep putting you in boxes.

On my part, I started talking with my normal accent. No more hiding my flaws or the way I sound to please a honky tonky American who never let his county. How are you going to show you are living out loud too? Please let me know in the comments!

What would I tell the 21 years old me. Advice from the vault.

A couple of weeks ago, I started working in a Brazilian steakhouse, close to my house. I went there for lunch and they offered me a job. The manager told me they needed another manager and with my experience in restaurants, I could do the job. He called me the next day and offered me the hostess position. According to him “You will need to know the other employees first, so they don’t get frustrated with the new manager.” I accepted the hostess position. They just hired a new manager. 

Was I tripping? No, because we had the interview in Portuguese, so I can’t even use the excuse of being lost in translation. They just allured me into getting a job, to get a better position later, that won’t probably happen. So here I’m, 36 years old, working again as a hostess. 

For little to no money. It’s all good. I’m working with some 20 something years old, and I feel like I have a lot to teach and share my wisdom *insert sarcasm*. I think I do have some life experience that’s worth sharing, and the best part is, they listen to me. At least I think they do. 

So here is some of what I’ve been telling them. Some things which I would love that someone would have told me when I was 21. 

Arraial do Cabo – Rio de Janeiro – Sorry about the 2008 Camera Resolution.

Don’t jump into College so fast.

I started college when I was 19, almost 20, and I still drag thinking about what could I have done differently, if I had waited just a little longer. Tourism and Hospitality Management is a vague degree, that you normally don’t need to work in hotels and restaurants. I had friends who took journalism, New Media classes and went to Culinary schools, who don’t work with that anymore, in their 30’s. They all followed their heart at some point and decided to do what made them happy, instead of what society expected from them. 

It’s ok if you don’t have money.

Don’t get 70 hour work weeks and be exhausted to enjoy the time of your life, because you need to catch up with all the bills. Be broke, accept some help if someone offers. Help comes in different forms.

Maybe the help is staying in an apartment for free, when they don’t live there, like a housekeeper. Or some food donations from friends, when you have zero money. Make sure to befriend a chef, they are the ones who can feed you, because they always cook too much. It’s ok to struggle in your 20’s. I’m not talking about the kids whose parents are rich and yet they pretend to suffer when the only suffering is to check their bank account for allowance. 

I’m talking about the chicken noodle ramen folks. You know who you are.  

He/She might not be the love of your life, and it’s ok to admit it. 

Life will move on and so does you. They need to feel loved and validated is real and at some point, we all feel like we are going to die if the person doesn’t reciprocate the love. It’s a dead-end zone. Don’t give someone exclusive attention, if the feeling is not mutual.

It’s almost guaranteed you are going to crash at some point. Some people just do that to feed their ego and you are their unlimited amount of coins. You just have to hit your head on the brick a few times, and they get the coins.

Some people just like to allure you into their world, like nothing else matters, only to make themselves feel validated. Make plenty of mistakes, learn from them and move on. Or be like Taylor Swift who wrote a 10-minute song and profit from heartbreak. Something gotta give. 

Don’t let people dictate how you should behave. 

“Oh, look how crazy she is.” I’ve heard that plenty of times when I was just being as happy as I could be. I didn’t need anyone’s validation and tagging me like the crazy one was their easiest way to bring me down. As you start taming yourself because your loud mouth is not accepted by some members of society. People are usually led by church believes. Bless your heart, honey. Be loud, be crazy, laugh, and make memories. Those shameful folks are always going to judge you, no matter how you behave, so might as well have fun. 

First time seeing snow in 2007- North Carolina

Travel. As much as you can and as far as you can. 

I remember being in my early 20’s, visiting different places and staying at hostels. Hostels are shared accommodation, very popular in Europe, where the type of hotel was originated. You have CoEd rooms or Male and Female dorms, usually with bunkbeds. It gives you a sense of respect and freedom, and if you are traveling alone like was my case most of the time, you can make friends and meet people from all over the world.

In most of the hostels, you have a communal kitchen, a shared living room, and sometimes a bar, as they had at the one I stayed in Perth, Australia. They offered breakfast in the morning and became a bar at night. 

While young and broke, visiting coastal cities in Rio, I had the chance to figure out what I love doing. Photography and travel to new and not-so-popular places. One of my biggest dreams at that time was to backpack around Europe. 

I even bought the guide and the backpack itself, but I couldn’t afford to go. I wish someone would have told me to take a risk and go anyway. That’s why I say, if you are broke, go broke. Sleep in a hostel, have one meal a deal, make friends, check out less touristic places, eat like a local. Make memories. Work abroad. 

The only time I visited NYC, in 2007. Stayed in a hostel, had 1 meal a deal, +coffee. I was utterly alone in the city. Asking for strangers to take pictures. Other tourists, cause new yorkers don’t stop for you.

If money is a real problem, work abroad. 

If I remember correctly, Europe has a type of visa called a Holiday Visa, which allows European citizens to work and travel around Australia for up to two years. And that’s how most of the people I met from Europe were doing in Australia. For some other people, you have to get a working visa and pay some agency fees, but you can get it back with your work in that country. You need that first investment though, but after that, you can make it. It’s all about taking chances. I did. 

Before becoming a permanent resident in the States, I came over two times on a J1 type of visa, that allowed me to work for a few months at a time, like in Ski Resorts and restaurants, during the winter season. I also went to Australia, on the same type of visa, to work for a year. Remember you can always volunteer, research what type of temporary visa the country you are interested in has and explore all the options. Not saying this is only a 20’s something thing to do, it’s because it’s much easier when you are younger. 

When you have some baggage, you are not as free as you were at some point. You are more cautious. 

I have this conversation with my coworkers and I feel like I’m their Mr. Myagi. Go ahead Hostess-San, be wise and live your life. Take chances. Giving some advice to the novice makes me want to stay in that place just for that purpose. My ego. 

See you next week, weather permitting.

XXX

JS

 

Why can’t I be a minimalist.

A few days ago, we moved to a new apartment, after living an entire year in a place I considered pretty much how the inside of a cast would look like. Dark, with no ventilation and people stepping on your head for the rest of eternity.

We tried to move last June, unfortunately, it didn’t happen, because things only happen with me, when they are supposed to. I don’t work against the universe. I just let it be. Even though that might cause me an extreme cause of claustrophobia and daily rage.

“Oh, you should be thankful for having a place to live,” I was, but also I don’t wish that type of apartment on anyone else. Again, it was temporary. More like an emergency, as we had just moved to Denver and had spent a lot with moving costs. That place seemed suitable.

The year went by fast.

It was also the year that I bought less stuff. Less furniture, fewer clothes, shoes, and kitchen gadgets. I didn’t have any space to put in those 600 sqft 1 bedroom apartments. It was already cluttered before we even moved in. The windows were small and it was like living in the underworld. A cave, where people that live off the grid go into hiding. Receiving visitors was treacherous. My friends came over to celebrate my birthday, all the way from Georgia. They had to sleep in my camper, parked in front of the house. It was fun for them and the kids, but I was mortified.

In the Cold November Rain

Settling in a new place has never been easier. It’s much more pleasurable when you go from a small place to a little bigger unit. Having my office back has also shifted my perspective into what I need to do in terms of peace, to plan my next step. Putting out the stuff from the box, I realized I could never be a minimalist.

Great for people that live with one fork, one knife, and a pan. I’m a collector, again collector, not hoarder, I throw stuff out. When it is necessary.

I need to have the security of having gadgets.

I landed in this country with two suitcases. I had absolutely nothing, as I left everything I had behind to start fresh in a new country. As I left all my memorabilia at home, I felt helpless. Helpless in terms of looking around and don’t see anything from my past, any of my references. Everything was new. I was new.

Little by little, with all the working hours I put in, I started acquiring the items for my new so-called life. My life in America, living as an American, buying useless stuff only to accumulate in the garage.

I quickly got attached, especially to the books.

I still have the first book I bought in a used bookstore in Chicago, back in 2012. Wicked is still on the shelf to remind me how far I’ve come. I don’t have any of the stuff I brought from Brasil. It was easy to get rid of those since there was not much, and the Chicago winter was much harder than Sao Paulo’s winter.

Every time I go to Brazil, I pick up some of the stuff that is still at my mom’s house. My cd collection, my Titanic VHS, my books. My mom waits for me with a bag of my old stuff, because she also doesn’t have much space, at least that’s what she tells me.

Those are my memories, not hers.

My mom had a box ready with my stuff, for me to bring home from Brazil.

If you ever had to live abroad, you know that the minimum you can have in the new country can make a lot of difference. It’s not just stuff, it represents what you are now, your success, your accomplishments.

I can’t be a minimalist because, for example, I like my books too much. I can’t just read and get rid of it. I mark some passages while I’m reading. Some pages, even entire paragraphs.

Books are and have always been a great companion. I buy new ones, even though I have at least ten new ones to read. It also works for stationery items.

Folders, pens, planners, calendars, you name it, I have it.

If I think it’s cute and somehow useful, I will make sure to buy it. Even though I’m not at school anymore whenever the new school year starts at Walmart, I stock up on notebooks and pens.

To add all this up, I buy containers to store all that. Drawers, shelves, colored bins and that makes happy. Now you asked me how I manage to have all that in a 1 bedroom apartment? Sadly, I don’t have the answer to that.

Now I’m in a bigger place, it will be like a scavenger hunt with all the lost boxes. Like the Goofy Stickers I bought at Disney, God knows how long ago. Have I used it in the past 3 years? No. Do I intend to throw it out? Also no.

Josh can’t be a minimalist either.

Everything he has from Indiana, he is still keeping, like the blanket he has had since he was 3 years old or the shirt he wore when we hung out on the first Halloween.

He can’t be a minimalist, but he has the potential to be a hoarder. The tools work for him the same way Sephora eye palettes works for me. They all do different things, at least he says so.

New trends and influencers caused people to rethink their lifestyles.

Marie Kondo, the author of “The life-changing magic of tidying up” a few years ago in a Netflix series, told us to throw everything that doesn’t spark us joy in our lives anymore, in the garbage.

According to her explanation, the energy needs to circulate, and I agree. You don’t need to be a hoarder, but you can keep the stuff that brings comfort, like old books.

At the same time, Marie Kondo’s series was out, Netflix released a documentary about minimalism and how Americans consume a lot of unnecessary stuff.

How they have enormous houses and almost everyone has a garage full of stuff they don’t need, when they don’t have a garage, they have paid storage.

Which has been our case for the past 3 years. Living in a 1 bedroom apartment you barely have enough space for yourself, I can’t imagine storing all those tools in a closet.

Capitalism always makes you want more and more.

I don’t buy unnecessary stuff. Not anymore. Books yes, stationery items, yes. Clothes, shoes, kitchen gadgets I already have more than enough. As soon as I realized that I was only buying stuff to cover up my sadness and my lack of identity in this country, I learned how to manage consumerism.

The reason is I can’t be a minimalist, getting rid of everything I bought, but I can manage what I buy, with consciousness. Also, I never met an immigrant that is a minimalist, for the exact reason I said before.

Hopefully, you do whatever makes you happy. Like when I brought my new country some of the old me, with my CDs, magazines, and books.

 

 

Exit mobile version
%%footer%%