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5 Ways Blogging Is Like Traveling Through Airports

Posted by on Aug 20, 2013

Yes, this is another one of my comparison posts on the overall subject of blogging, this time relating it to airports. I’m in my consulting mode these days which means I’m flying a lot, although most of the time when I’m consulting I drive. However, I’m 17 hours away by car, thus this didn’t seem to be the smart thing to do, as I kept hearing from my wife. Lol

Syracuse Airport

The thing is that there are some things about blogging that really can compare to being in airports. If you’ve only ever been in one or two you may not be able to relate to these, but if you’ve flown at least 3 or 4 times you’ll see that I’m right on this one, even if you never thought about it before. Let’s begin.

1. There are some processes that never change. In airports, you always have to first get past the person who checks your ticket against your ID. Then you have to pull all your electronics out and put them in a tray, take everything out of your pockets and put them into a tray, take off your shoes and belt and put them in a tray, walk through the scanner and hope you’ve passed, and then put all that stuff back into where you took it from. Then you wait at your gate, walk forward when it’s your turn, put your stuff in the overhead, sit down, put on your seatbelt & fly to your destination. No matter what else happens, no matter the deviations, you always do these things.

When it comes to blogging, you probably always do these same things. You think about what your topic is going to be that you’re writing on, you verify your facts or your opinion, you open with your premise and then you write your post. Afterwards you check it for spelling (please do this lol), verify your keywords, then publish your post so others can read it and bask in your brilliance. Your process almost never changes once you get it down; if it does, you’re probably not writing all that often.

2. Often things are out of your control, no matter what you do. I’ve had a couple of flights canceled or altered because of the weather. I’ve had seats where I’ve paid for an upgrade taken from me for whatever reason. I’ve been pulled out of line and I’ve been selected to have a bag or two go under extra scrutiny. These are irritations but we get through them and move on with life.

With blogging, you can write what you feel is the best thing you’ve ever written and have no one read it or comment on it. You can set up all sorts of protections on your blog and still get hacked. You can have your hosting company suddenly go buggy and no one, including you, can get to your site. Some of these things are more critical than the others but you need to know that you can always overcome anything. Waste just a little bit of time worrying about it, then either get back to what you know or move on.

3. You can never find enough charging stations. At least there are places where we can charge up our phones, laptops and electronic readers these days. But there are never enough of them, and they get scarfed up pretty quickly. Every once in awhile there might be one last remaining spot but there are no seats close by, so you have to make a quick decision as to whether you trust the people who stand around the station or not.

For many bloggers, there are those days when you think and think and think and just can’t figure out what you want to say. Maybe you have a germ of an idea but you just can’t put it together. One of the realities of blogging is that you write an article, put it out, and at some point you have to write another post. It seems like there aren’t enough ideas or enough ways to come at your topic. But there are; look at what I’m comparing blogging to in this post. : – )

4. If you travel a lot you get to a point where you see the same thing over and over and some of it loses its excitement. When that starts to threaten to happen, you have to try to find new things to concentrate your mind on because, in reality, there’s always something different. For me, I’ve started people watching, and it’s the most amazing thing. As I write this there’s a kid who’s climbed up on one of those arrivals boards, a really attractive woman in very high heels and the tightest pants standing at the charging station in front of me typing away on her phone as if there’s nothing else in life to do, a Hasidic father and son, both with high black hats, looking for their gate and next flight, a young mother playing with her cute baby, and some people just chilling, watching TV or talking on their phones because they have a long wait for their next flight.

In blogging, sometimes it seems like you’re seeing the same thing over and over, whether it’s your blog or someone else’s blog. I lament often that I see multiple blogs writing the same thing all the time, as if they’re copying each other. The thing is that you should be able to have 30 people write about the same thing and end up with 30 totally different perspectives and taken on that subject. If you’re seeing the same thing over and over you need to broaden your perspective and look for other bloggers who can offer something different. If it’s your writing, work on your creativity and stop being so pedantic in using the same language and terminology.

5. Even in airports it can be all about networking and relationships. This is the 4th month of traveling for me and what I never really thought much about until it started is how often I see the same people. What’s also stunned me is that with so many people passing through airports every day that some of those people will remember my face. Though I don’t remember their names I’m familiar with certain flight attendants, the guys who load and drive the bus from one terminal to the next, some of the people working in certain restaurants, and some of the security people who check to make sure I’m not trying to sneak anything onto the plane. There’s a comfort in the familiarity and it helps in knowing that those times when they have to pull me out for a random heck there’s nothing personal about it.

The best blogs will have a consistent group of people who stop by to read and comment, and if you’re a smart blogger you’ll not only welcome them by responding to their comments, but when you can you’ll visit their blogs and try to find something to comment on. When all is said and done true blogging is about relationships and networking, whether you’re trying to make money or not. I wouldn’t go out on a limb and say that you’re building friendships as if those people lived in town all the time, but you’re building friendly interactions and trust, and some of those people will help to promote you when they like you without your asking. There’s never anything wrong with that.
 

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18 Comments »

Jeevan Jacob John:

Hey Mitch,

Great comparison πŸ™‚

1) I agree there are certain processes that doesn’t change, but I think we should change them up (talking about blogging, of course). Having an automated process is great, saves you a lot of time, helps you to be efficient, but it can also limit you.

I like to experiment a lot; figure out how each factor can increase or decrease results (based on what we are measuring). So, a big fan of experimenting with processes πŸ˜€

2) Agree. We need to be prepared for those situations. We can’t always prepare for everything, but we can always take measures in preventing common scenarios, such as hacking. Another thing to remember is to not panic (People tend to panic a lot – and that isn’t good, because our emotions can get in the way of decision making).

3) & 4) Ah, yes. Not even ideas to go around. As a blogger, I have written advocating for both sides: Writing about blogging is hard, since there are so many bloggers covering the same topic. It can be hard to come up with ideas.

I have also written about ideas being innumerable (I kind of regret that. There are billions and trillions of ideas out there. But, you need to find them and form your own perspective on those ideas).

Read more, live more and experiment more – Those are my idea generators.

5) Indeed. Never forget to network – form those friendly relationships. They can help you – a lot or maybe a little. Both are good πŸ˜‰

Anyways, thanks for the post!

By the way, how are you? I haven’t been blogging for a while (about one year now). So it is good to see that your blog is still active πŸ˜€

August 20th, 2013 | 4:52 PM

Hi Jeevan; good to see you after such a long time. Yeah, I’m still around; don’t see myself going anywhere for a good long time.

Glad you enjoyed this post as well. I like finding things to use as examples of comparison to blogging, and I’m not always sure people get it, let alone respond well to it. I’m glad you got it and I like how you commented on it. I also hope it inspires you to start blogging again. πŸ™‚

August 20th, 2013 | 8:29 PM

Good comparison! Blogging could be exciting as well as frustrating just as you get to experience with Airports. I have never seen such an analogy. However, it really makes sense noting what to expect with blogging. There are thrills and chills associated with like we have when flying always!

August 21st, 2013 | 1:28 PM

Hey Mitch blogging is an wonderful source which we can learn a lot and it also an world travel journey as we can meet many people on this board.Blogging which can help you to make money too unless you need to stand out of the crowd between nice post
shameem recently posted…How To Make Broken Links Work Well For Your Website?My Profile

August 23rd, 2013 | 12:50 PM

Thanks Shameem. However, don’t ever start out thinking about making money blogging. Think about whether you like it first, then think about that as a sidebar. Kind of like thinking about flying or driving; always a valid question.

August 25th, 2013 | 7:49 PM

I love the way yo do these comparison posts Mitch, very creative.

I remember when I visited the States and had to remove my shoes and belt and stuff. Usually don’t have to do that over here.

What really freaked me out though upon arrival was when they took my finger prints and scanned my retinas. Now that was weird.
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August 25th, 2013 | 4:59 AM

Pete, it’s what they do since 9/11. I would bet if it was your country that had planes flying into stuff the same type of thing would be happening there.

August 25th, 2013 | 7:50 PM

Oh, I realise that which is why I had no problem with it. I was just a little surprised is all.

Having said that, I was shocked on the way over when we stopped in Bali and was asked to go through extra security because we were flying to the States. There was only one person who created a huge fuss over it. An American of all people.
Sire recently posted…Review Of AdClickMediaMy Profile

August 25th, 2013 | 8:03 PM

A nice comparison. I like the one about meeting the same people over and over again. You eventually get to know them and form relations. Some might actually become friends though IMO and not just friendly interactions. I’ve made a couple of friends that way.
Nikko recently posted…PyΓΆrΓ€ily – suosittu urheilulajiMy Profile

August 27th, 2013 | 7:59 AM

Nikko, I don’t think we’ll actually become friends, but I like the friendly part for sure.

August 28th, 2013 | 8:32 PM

I had to chuckle when I read this title Mitch because I know you and airports have been great buddies lately. You poor thing!

So in May I actually flew twice. Yep, haven’t taken a trip in probably seven years and I flew twice in one month. My first trip was easy, a breeze but the second one not so much. Only because my sister works for Delta and we can fly for very very little but on stand by. I hate stand by and it took us all darn day to get on a flight to get to our destination so I know what a pain they can be.

Okay, got on my own little rant there but you’re right with the comparisons and I never really thought about it like that until I started reading your post.

So I do agree with everything and especially #5 because you know how I feel about relationships with my readers. Having had a really rough month last month they stuck by me through it all even though I wasn’t visiting their place at all. I was so sad and knew I couldn’t do my comments justice so I had to wait it out. But because we have those relationships they kept coming by and supporting me so now that I’m better I’ll be returning the favor.

Thanks Mitch for this comparison and hope your schedule will be slowing down a little.

Have a great week.

~Adrienne
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September 2nd, 2013 | 6:15 PM

Thanks Adrienne, although things really won’t be slowing down much, even this week that I’m home. And meeting that couple that was flying standby made me happy that I’ve never had to do that. Right now my blessing is that I’m a silver member, which gets me automatic upgrades to first class for free when they’re available; hard to be mad at that. lol

I love writing the comparison posts, and I’ve run into a few other people who do it as well. Lots of fun!

September 2nd, 2013 | 11:38 PM

Again, kudos to you Mitch for nudging me into the blogging pool. It’s been 170 weeks and 170 posts. Unreal.

About a year or so in, I discovered I’m writing to be a better writer.

They say you’re suppose to write for the reader. Others say write for yourself. I’m a nice blend. Akin to a green smoothie. A mix of celery, kale, organic apples, berries, to name a few.

What keeps me going is a quote by Hemingway who said:

β€œI write one page of masterpiece to ninety-one pages of shit. I try to put the shit in the wastebasket.”

p.s. This smoothie is ahhhhhh so good!

December 9th, 2014 | 12:25 PM

I would hope you’d never seen such an analogy before. lol I hadn’t thought much about it having thrills but I guess that fits because sometimes I do feel pretty good after I’ve written a post; like this one.

December 9th, 2014 | 2:19 PM

Steve, you might not believe this but in the almost 8 years I’ve had this blog (Friday is my anniversary) you’re the first person to put a curse word in a comment, and I’m going to leave it there… this time… lol

I’m glad I inspired someone to write; so many others won’t even try, and I think it’s horrible to give up before even trying, especially when they’ve shown some interest in the deal.

Yeah, you enjoy that smoothie; I’m going to look for a cinnamon bun.

December 9th, 2014 | 2:21 PM

This was a cool post. I liked it a lot.
Steve Borek recently posted…How Do I Find the Right Person for the Job?My Profile

December 9th, 2014 | 2:22 PM

Early Happy Anniversary!

I normally don’t curse on comments or in my own posts.

However that quote by Hemingway puts everything in perspective in regards to writing.

How will you celebrate your anniversary?

December 9th, 2014 | 2:26 PM

Probably the same way I’ve celebrated my other online anniversaries… waiting for the masses to comment and congratulate me so I can respond πŸ™‚ That pretty much means I’ll be doing what I do every day… which is a lot of nothing lol

December 9th, 2014 | 7:39 PM
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