Blog Interviews 02: Arriane "Wanderrgirl" Serafico - A Game Changer

Friday, December 28, 2012

One day, when I was checking my Tumblr dashboard, I looked to Abbey’s. She posted something about an event, called #Blogworthy and it was very interesting. It’s a workshop to learn some blogging lessons and meet so many inspirational people. I was very curious, then I tried to find out about who’s behind this creative event, and that time, finally for the first time, I knew this amazing young woman.

I was so into her blog. Her blog is really like a ‘treasure trove’ for me; where I can find any inspirations, motivation and some tips for to-be-better young people, it’s very worthwhile. She writes in fun way, every single post makes me smile or even laugh. She’s a very good writer!

She once said in her blog, never afraid to ask somebody who really inspires me. Ask, talk or email them, anything! You never know a miracle will come when you dare yourself to ask. Well, miracle did happen for me this morning. When I checked emails from my Blackberry, there's an email from "Arriane Serafico" and I was about to jump out from my bed! 

So this is what I did, for the second time (the first time click here), to make another blog interview. Please let me introduce you to Arriane *Wanderrgirl* Serafico!


Hi, Arriane! I spell it right, right? Double R, single N. So, finally we’re doing this interview! I’m gonna straight to the first question :D I found yourself is very creative and amazing young woman, do you agree about that? How do you feel about yourself?

Thank you so much! It’s already baffling enough that people would actually read my blog, but it’s even more unbelievable and incredible that my words and photos could have an effect beyond the 7,107 islands of the Philippines. It’s always the most random surprise when I get comments and e-mails from readers all the way from Indonesia, Singapore, Norway, Australia, and even Romania!

2013 is literally just around the corner, so I’m heart-explodingly excited about that. 2012 has been such a milestone year for me (I even got to do a TEDx talk!), and so now there’s so much pressure (from myself) for my 2013 to surpass this year’s amazingness.

If you look inside my brain right now, my thoughts and ideas are having a rather chaotic flash mob party. It’s been pretty hard to sit still this past week because of all that ruckus! As always, I will try my hardest to turn all those ideas into reality.

Arriane for TEDx Talk. Make sure you click the link she provides above and enjoy! (:

You have done some projects in the past years, one of them is #Blogworthy (2012). You teach about blogging world, collaborate with other brands and many more. May I ask some useful tips for those bloggers, who aren’t Filipino or live overseas and don’t get a chance to join the workshop, like me? :P Just the important ones from the master!

Blogworthy is one of my 2012 babies. It was such a great experience to meet my readers and interact with them on such a personal level and teach them about the things I’ve learned about blogging so far. They even got to see what my backend looks like! (The online one, not my physical one, obviously. That’d be weird. And um, possibly a little offensive.)

My message in the workshops is always the same: Your blog is your message to the world, so don’t you want to make it a good one?

You may read my Better Blogging 101 series for more specific blogging tips, but in general:
  • Go beyond the bare minimum. Don’t just do things the way everybody else does it, precisely because, well, that’s how everybody else does it. Push the bar; break rules, create new ones; astound people by doing more than what’s expected. Don’t waste your readers’ time with generic, run-of-the-mill and pointless posts.
  • Before you hit publish, ask yourself: Is this work that I’m actually proud of? Is this work that I will still be proud of, even after a year?
  • Lastly, be the best version of yourself. Stop comparing yourself to other bloggers, because that will only frustrate you. Just concentrate on being so good and so different that people can’t help but get clicking and reading. 
blogworthy wanderrgirl
Arriane with her kiddos in Blogworthy event batch two! 

Let’s talk a bit about your past. What exactly you do after graduated from college? (maybe some advice for us, that will be graduate soon!)

I went straight to work! My first job was with an NGO for good governance and ethical leadership, so that’s how I got into the whole Philippine development and political scene. Eventually, I ended up working in the government, where I still work now.

Along the way, I started experimenting with a couple of startup ventures and advocacy projects, such as co.lab (the first coworking space in the Philippines), Postura Project (a 30-day challenge to wear something Filipino everyday), Blogworthy, and the 2013 Go-Getter Planner. 

All that time, I just kept on writing about my adventures, experiences and learnings on my blog, 

My advice on applying for your first job: Work for a company you would love to learn from, and not just a company who can pay you the most. Even early on, search for great mentors. Some questions you can consider:
  • Will this company be able to provide me with a great learning environment and experience? With that I mean, will this company be able to teach me things that I can’t learn on my own?
  • Will this company give me opportunities to meet and work with people I can collaborate with and learn from?
  • Will I be working with people who are open to new ideas (and not just give me a manual and expect me to stick with it, to the letter)?

Arriane and her friends for Postura Project

What do you do in your spare time, Arriane? I believe you are a pretty-busy-worker, so I’m wondering if you have relaxing time what are you going to do (:

I find that post-processing photos for the blog to be a relaxing activity, which I know makes me sound even more like a workaholic. ;)

Seriously though, I’m such a homebody. I rarely go out! Whenever I really don’t feel like working, 
I find myself reading books, perusing other blogs, frolicking on Pinterest, watching Korean dramas and variety shows, writing on my journal, or window-shopping at the mall sometimes.

Another helpful stress reliever: dancing! My former varsity teammates and I still get together sometimes to dance for fun. We sometimes even hold K-Pop dance classes, haha!

Me: I had watched your video when you guys were dancing (in the middle of 8 degree) at Han River! That was so cool!!

Plan or dream for the next 5-8 years later?

I definitely want to take a year off from work in 2014, either to study or to do an internship/fellowship somewhere abroad.

Five years from now, I want to have been an instrumental part in creating a national design policy for my country (we’ve passed the bill in the Senate – which is MASSIVE news!). I also want to have a stable business by then:  fingers crossed that at least one or two of my startup ventures now really builds momentum and takes flight in the next two years!

Now is about traveling solo! Geez, I envy you! Visit some places in local and overseas, mostly alone! How do you feel about traveling solo? Any tips if we want to travel alone?

I always say that everyone should travel solo at least once in their life, but you know what? I take it back. Traveling alone shouldn’t be a once-in-a-lifetime experience. Do it as often as you can, especially at crucial years in your life.

I remember, very vividly, my first trip abroad alone: it was in 2008, and I was bound for Prague, Czech Republic. I was equal parts terrified and thrilled beyond measure. However, I came back to Manila braver, hungrier for adventure, more self-aware, and with a different and wider perspective of the world and the infinite possibilities that come with it.

Traveling with friends or family is a fun, definitely, but traveling solo is a different kind of fulfillment .Trust me on this one.

The latest trip to Korea a few months ago. 

Okay, two more questions. Do you have any advice or critics to those want to start blogging? 

I reeeeally don’t think I’m in a position to be ‘critiquing’ blogs, so I’ll just give you this: Keep on experimenting! Develop post formats or styles that are unique to you. Keep on writing until you find your distinct blogging voice. If there’s something you want to learn, Google it! Seriously, almost everything I know about blogging is from Google (and through LOTS of trial and error).

Reach out to others and find ways to collaborate. You’ll be surprised at how many generous and talented people there are out there, and the possibilities you can create! Keep on persisting and continue dreaming big :)

Last one, make it perfect! I really want to know if you have any messages for young people (about dreams, passion, career, anything). We are so much ready to hear from you (:

I feel that our generation is very lucky because everything is democratized by the internet. We have all these tools and technologies at our fingertips -- we could really start a revolution from our own bedrooms. You can use whatever you're passionate about, whether it’s photography or writing or drawing – use it as a tool for making a difference, in whatever way you want.

Stop thinking that you need to be "somebody" before starting anything. You don't even need to be a certain age. Don't wait for a go signal from anyone. Stop looking for a manual or a step-by-step guide to changing the world: THERE IS NONE. Be brave and just jump!

You can be absolutely anything you want to be. Don’t believe anyone who says otherwise.

arriane serafico
Arriane Serafico, the game changerr. 
Blog: | Twitter: arriane_ | Facebook: Wanderrgirl

All of the pictures above are all courtesy of Wanderrgirl Facebook Page

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