The start of this blog came during a challenging time for the world, amidst the pandemic of COVID-19.
After the initial shock wore off, the realization set in that the events industry was changing. Clients were unsure of the future of their businesses, unsure how to gather with loved ones on their wedding dates, and unsure how to meet the fundraising goals we were striving to achieve while planning their galas. Events were being cancelled, postponed, or shifted to virtual models.
With hospitality spanning across the restaurant, travel, tourism, hotel and event industries, and the pandemic prompting closures, travel restrictions and social distancing measures, many of my peers and dear friends lost their jobs.
It became overwhelmingly clear that the impact of COVID-19 would be long lasting for an industry that’s contingent on people gathering.
Those in the events industry know that it’s extremely fast paced, and a lot can change within a day. Quotes and bids are typically expedited, and shifting goals or new ideas can present a sense of urgency given lead time.
In short, our clients are our priority, and deadlines are very real. There is one opportunity to get an event right, and a lot rides on that day for our clients, their guests, sponsors, fundraising goals, and even their emotional investments.
Therefore, event planners strive to stay on the pulse of the industry, to find the best matches for our clients. On a weekly basis, I loved discovering new vendors at networking events, and meeting up with event partners after work to chat about their newest endeavors.
I was fortunate to still be employed, but as the pandemic caused a steady decline across the events industry, I found myself with more time on my hands than I could remember having in years.
I had become so accustomed to this go-go-go lifestyle, especially in New York, that the sudden halt in all of the above led me to question, what’s next?
I’ve always enjoyed writing. English was my favorite subject in school, and I much preferred writing papers to taking tests. I minored in Communications at Endicott College, which later led me to spearhead marketing initiatives for a previous employer, from website redesign to ghost writing, and social media management.
I thought, if I could write professionally in this field for a company, what would it look like if I wrote for myself?
The down time gave me permission to explore a passion of mine, and learn a new skill. WordPress is not in my wheelhouse by any means, but reading up on the basics, watching tutorials and leaning (heavily) on the live chat feature, built the foundation for me to share my experiences with others. I’m not HTML savvy, but I’m doing my best to learn a little more each day.
Embracing the change of pace led me to discover a new hobby, a fresh take on my daily routine, and a creative outlet that allows me to revisit favorite moments.
Yes, writing the blog was, and is, a risk. It’s a step out of my comfort zone, and a challenge to learn a platform I had otherwise never seen the backend of. But, it’s so much fun.
I would encourage anyone who’s been thinking about pursuing a passion project for long enough, to just go for it. Now is the time, not next week, or next year.
Change doesn’t always happen when or how we wanted, but it offers the chance to do things differently. We have the choice to embrace it, and ask ourselves, what could my next chapter be?