Monday, March 30, 2015

Sometimes It Pays to Step Outside of Your Comfort Zone

I try to keep this blog a relatively "happy" place. I like to have fun and keep things pleasant for the most part. That means I'm not much into talking about controversial subjects, sharing vulgar, gruesome, or violent photographs or stories.

I'm a happy dog and try to keep it that way!

That doesn't mean I don't care about any of those things, but I just chose to not write about them too often. Why? Well, I don't know about you guys but I see a lot of that stuff in my Facebook and Twitter feed already. I'd rather just keep my blog an upbeat place, I guess you could say. And when I do write about this kind of stuff, I try to do it in a "nice" way.

Every now and then, I'll see something that really reaches out to me. Something that I just have to speak up about. This was the case in September 2014. I got so tired of seeing advocates of animals posting photos that didn't match up with their stories and I wrote an article titled "How Important Is Credibility as an Advocate for Animals?". This post was indeed out of my comfort zone and isn't one of my usual topics.

What bugged me the most I think was the photo of Veterinary Students spaying cats floating around the internet. There were so many animal advocates sharing this photo claiming that the photo was of animals being tested in a cosmetic laboratory. I didn't even need to do any research and I knew that was untrue. (I did research it, to make sure of course.)

So many people believe it too. I know it's untrue because I know what a cat spay looks like. But, if a trusted animal advocate posts the photo and claims that it's "cats being tested in a cosmetic lab" why wouldn't your average everyday person believe it? These people know what they are talking about, right?


But anyways, I should step off my soap box, because I've already written that blog post. The point of this post is that sometimes, it pays to step outside of your comfort zone. As many of you already know, I am now a Finalist in the 2015 BlogPaws Pet Blogging and Social Media Nose-to-Nose Awards for writing that blog post. If I hadn't stepped outside of my comfort zone, I would never be in this position.

The BlogPaws Nose-to-Nose Awards are deemed the highest honor that a Pet Blogger can achieve. I know I haven't won yet, but even just being a Finalist is exhilarating to say the least.

Last week, I had my first official interview with a local publication about my BlogPaws Nose-to-Nose Awards nomination. My interview will be published in The Austin Pets Directory mid-April. Don't worry, I'll share it with you guys when it happens. It was weird being interviewed, but definitely a fun experience.


Will I be at the red carpet event to watch the announcement of the winners in Nashville this May? Still, this is unkown for me. Even more so than being a Finalist, I would love to attend the BlogPaws conference. I've always wanted to attend.

So why not? It's complicated, this year especially. My biggest problem is convincing my significant other to let me go alone. Silly - yes, I know.

IF I can achieve this, then I will need to land a sponsorship to attend the conference. That part sounds easier to me, and I feel like I could totally make that happen. Said significant other's work closed down unexpectedly about two weeks ago, and we've had to dip into some of the money I had saved up from my blogging work. There is no way I can afford to go on my own now.

And lastly, there are my children. Finding a babysitter for them would be a challenge, since my mother passed away a few months ago. Their dad could watch them if he's still unemployed then, but I don't know how long his unemployment will last.

Challenges and all, I still hope to attend the Conference. And, I will try my hardest to make it happen too!


My readers and followers are my biggest inspiration. I sometimes get emails from people saying "I inspire them", and I find it truly touching. But really, all of YOU are the biggest inspiration anyone could ask for. So, for that I just want to say thanks. And I'd also like to encourage you to step outside of your comfort zone every now and then. Stand up for what you believe in. It really does pay. :)

Here's to seeing you all in Nashville this May (hopefully).

28 comments:

  1. Congratulations. We sure wish you luck and you find a way to attend. Fingers crossed for you. Have a marvellous Monday.
    Best wishes Molly

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  2. Congratulations, I hope you can travel to Nashville! And I hope you will get the trophy woohoo!!! I remember ths post and the photos... and it bugged me too...I was totally pixxed that this photos were misused that way...
    easy rider

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    1. It reminds me of a big game of telephone... you know where you whisper one thing in someone's ear and see how it ends up at the last person's ear...

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  3. Huge congratulations to you!! Hoping with all of my heart that you can go!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Wondering if you could bring the kids with you? Maybe something could be worked out? I have never seen kids there, but you never know. I am soooooo hoping you can be there!

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    1. Oh goodness... I wouldn't mind bringing my older daughter, because she's easier to watch. She's not the one I really need to worry about though lol. If I brought Violet with me, well I think I'd spend all my time chasing her around. Maybe I can just throw her in the doggy daycare? LOL - totally just kidding, although she does like to act like she's a dog sometimes. I'd much rather go without them. Love them, but I haven't done anything without them in over a year and a half now.

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  4. Good for you Ann......sometimes we WANT to say things but hesitate and they aren't voiced but stay in our hearts. I know I sometimes hesitate to share a post or photo because I'm afraid someone will think it's too "out there" but if it's something that TOUCHES me, I do it outside my comfort zone. I hope you find a way to get to Blogpaws. I've never gone myself as it's an expense that's hard to justify (especially when I look at my grocery bill...hahaha) but I do hope you can be there to meet everyone that we all know through our blogging.

    Hugs, Pam

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    1. Good for you Pam :) Sometimes, we just need to stop worrying about what other people think. This is the internet after all, and someone is always going to disagree with you. But, one thing I love about other pet bloggers is that they are good at respecting each others' differences. Hopefully one day you'll be able to attend too!

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  5. Well said Ann!!!! Loved this post, and a HUGE congrats to you on being a finalist!!!!
    ღ husky hugz ღ frum our pack at Love is being owned by a husky!

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  6. Congratulations. I agree with you that its better to share positivity rather then negativity. It is very inspiring what you discuss and it is awesome that you are a finalist. I hope everything falls into place where you can make going to Nashville a reality :)
    www.southernfolly.com

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    1. Thanks! I think there is a place for the negativity, and I don't care if others decide to share that stuff. But, it's just not my thing or something I want to share regularly here on my own blog. To each their own!

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  7. Congratulations Ann, how exciting!!!!!!! :-) That was a great post, and I'm so happy it was recognized. Hope everything works out and you got to attend the conference, you deserve to be there! :-)

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  8. Congratulations, Ann! (And my condolences on your mother's passing.)
    My fingers are crossed that you're able to convince your SO, get a sponsorship AND find sitter(s) if necessary. It does seem like there are a lot of things to manage but I do hope it happens! I'd offer to babysit but I suspect we're too far away :)

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  9. I'm like you - I always try to post non-controversial, happy-happy stuff! Good for you for going out of your comfort zone - and clearly you got rewarded for it! As a person who was once paid to be a professional researcher, it really bugs me when folks just pass stuff on without checking to see if it's legit. (It's like that "boycott Heinekien" (sp?) photo that went around a couple of years ago - they were supposedly supporting dog fighting, but it wasn't true if people would have taken a minute to look into it.)

    Anyway, I hope you'll get to go to BlogPaws - would be very exciting to go as a nominee! (And I hope your SO finds another job soon!) Hopefully everything works out and you'll get to go. Congrats on the interview as well!

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  10. Congratulations, Miss Ann! We love all your posts so we are very happy you were nominated in the Best Blog Post category. AND...we sure hope we get to meet you in person at BlogPaws. This will be our first year so maybe us "newbies" can hang out together.
    Oz

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  11. Bravo to you! You deserve so much recognition and we hope you get to go to BlogPaws too.

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  12. Concatulations on being a finalist ! "complicated"... that's the word Mum was looking for herself too ;) Purrs

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  13. Keep up the good work and hope you can make it to BlogPaws.

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  14. That is so true, Ann, and I'm glad it worked out so well for you. It IS inspiring to know that you stepped out of your comfort zone, wrote about something you felt passionate about, and then got this high recognition for it. I do hope you can work everything out so that you can make it to BlogPaws, I'd love to meet you...and since I've never been, fun to have someone else there I know that is new to it as well!

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  15. Big congrats to you and I hope you can get to go!! There is so much stuff posted as legit on the internet when it isn't and it just takes a few to share and it suddenly becomes true!! This is the world we live in!!

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  16. So proud of you - your nomination for that post is most deserving. Fingers and paws crossed that you are able to find a way. I will continue to think positive thoughts and look forward to meeting you there!

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  17. Congratulations again on your nomination. And the mom hopes you will be there in Nashville because she really wants to meet you. :)

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  18. Congratulations! It was a really wonderful post and I'm glad you're being recognized for it! Any company would be lucky to sponsor you because you are a great blogger and representative for the products you believe in!

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  19. Congrats on the award - I hope you make it to the conference...and I hope you win!

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  20. shiners mom...conga rats....all oh uz heer in de land oh trout look for werd ta reedin yur interview !!! how kewl iz THAT !! N we hope ya findz a way ta make it two de confrunce.....that wood be way awesum two !! ♥♥♥

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  21. I'm a big believer in stepping outside of your comfort zone every now and again. I'm glad you do it sometimes and I hope you'll be able to make it to BlogPaws. I know you'd really enjoy it.

    Good luck in the award competition.

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  22. Ann it would be wonderful if you could attend! I am so sorry about the hard times though and you have your hands pretty full. Fingers crossed. Love Dolly

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  23. Concats! I wish you could go but I totally understand. Hope your money situation turns around.

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