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Becoming happier in a year of devastation and anxiety

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Photo by Stella Rose on Unsplash

I was rather proud of how well I held up in 2020 despite everything thrown my way. The loss of my job was a silver lining. Family illnesses taught me the importance of the present. Staying home allowed me to grow my business.

Yet, we entered into autumn and changed our clocks. More darkness, cooler weather, and the imminent “how do we celebrate the holidays this year?” settled into my anxiety-prone brain.

I about lost it.

Something needed to change because I was right on track for burnout and an anxiety attack. …

Solopreneur | Podcast Manager | Cat Mom

Author pictured with her muted calico cat, Mia
Author pictured with her muted calico cat, Mia
Photo by Author — 2020


Hi there! I’m Kristi Jacobsen — a solopreneur, podcast manager, traveler, Canadian, equestrian, and cat mom. I’m also currently a Senior Customer Service Manager, but I’ll be breaking free from the customer service life in March 2021 to become a content creator and podcast consultant.

I’m a 34-year old Los Angeles resident with a passion for travel and a desire to become a digital nomad (when it’s safe, of course). My family and I moved to the United States in 1994 and I grew up in New Jersey. …

How planning a solo trip abroad to Scotland is getting me through the pandemic

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Photo by Bjorn Snelders on Unsplash

Traveling abroad is an experience, unlike any other. It changes you as you experience different cultures, meet new people, and open your mind to new ways of thinking. Similarly, solo travel is a life-shifting experience. With no one else to rely on, you gain new perspectives, courage, and grow by facing challenges alone.

I took my first solo trip in 2012. It was just to California, but it kickstarted my love for solo travel. Several years later, I traveled abroad for the first time. I toured Europe with a friend but had the opportunity to spend some time alone, giving me a taste of solo travel abroad. I navigated German and Danish airports, learned languages and customs, and — stranded in London — figured out a way home on my own. …

Simple steps to launching a podcast from your bedroom

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Photo by Soundtrap on Unsplash

So, you decided to start a podcast, but you have no idea where to start. You want to connect with your audience, share your message with the world, and get those sponsors!

But you have to buy expensive equipment, right? And rent recording studio space for hundreds or thousands of dollars? You need a website, don’t you?

No, no, and no.

That’s not to say you can’t have any of those things. You certainly can if they’re in your budget. Just know they’re not necessary to produce a successful podcast.

I launched my podcast from my bedroom, and many of the incredible podcasts out there did as well. …

Visit Scotland from your home with authors Sam Heughan and Graham McTavish

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Photo by Author (Kristi Jacobsen)

Let’s face it, 2020 didn’t go to plan for anyone. Late last fall, I started to research trips to Scotland for summer vacation. As a history nerd, outdoor enthusiast, and travel fiend, I envisioned a two-week vacation horseback riding through the Highlands, hiking Munros, and exploring castle ruins.

But, it’s 2020, and the pandemic squashed those dreams before they could even take shape. Heartbroken at the thought of staying put for the unforeseen future, I lost myself in adventure books, traveling to locations of the authors’ imaginations.

It’s not the same, though, especially when you’re in 18th-century America or early 20th century Africa, but it was enough for the time being. …

A subtle shift can make all the difference

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Photo by Ioana Tabarcea on Unsplash

I used to scoff at the articles suggesting I get up at 5 am to start writing or working on my side-hustle.

As a night-owl, my creativity and drive come to me at night. My mind is a mess of cobwebs in the morning, and I’m never fully awake until mid-morning and four cups of coffee later.

Getting up in the morning for work was always a struggle. I pulled myself out of bed at the last minute, threw on jeans and a t-shirt (we’re a casual company), and drove my 5-minute commute to the office.

When Los Angeles implemented lockdown, and my company went into work from home mode, my morning routine went out the door. For the first several months, I rolled out of bed at 7:45 am and was at my desk 5 feet away by 8 am. …

How Dick Wolf’s One Chicago tackled 2020 headlines in their season premieres.

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Photo by Andrew Seaman on Unsplash

*Caution! There may be spoilers!*

It’s that time of year again. Our favorite shows are back on our television screens. In a year where spring seasons were cut short due to filming shutdowns and a long summer finding other entertainment, a return to our regularly scheduled fall programming is welcome.

I eagerly awaited Dick Wolf’s One Chicago shows (Chicago Med, Chicago Fire, and Chicago PD). They’re the only shows I follow regularly, and they’re an escape into another world. Eager for them to return, I didn’t stop to consider how the new storylines might play out.

These three shows and Wolf’s other shows Law & Order: SVU and FBI, are well known to rip stories straight from the headlines. And in a year that brought us a global pandemic, the Black Lives Matter protests, calls for police reform, and a contentious Presidential Election, nothing is off the table. I can guarantee some, if not all, of the 2020 headlines will reflect on the shows. …

Start with your industry connections

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Photo by CoWomen on Unsplash

You outlined the format of your podcast and decided to host guest experts.

Great! Except how do you find guests that align with your podcast mission and content and provide value to your audience?

Finding guests can be hard at the beginning of a podcast; I won’t lie. It’s especially tricky if you don’t have an extensive network to draw from. But as the podcast grows and you begin to network and connect with people, you might find yourself drowning in guest submissions.

It’s a good problem to have — I promise!

Since the beginning of 2020, sourcing guests has been easy thanks to some amazing guests with connections. But it wasn’t always that way. I was just like you, wondering how the heck to find guests aligned with my mission and could bring their unique perspective to the table. …

5 tips to disconnect and re-energize yourself on the daily

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Photo by Yuris Alhumaydy on Unsplash

Whether you live in America or elsewhere globally, I’m sure you’re experiencing fatigue from the 2020 US Presidential Election. Combined with fatigue from the global pandemic, lockdowns, restrictions, and being unable to travel and spend time with family, our mental health is, at best, precarious.

Unlike elections in other countries (Canada’s is typically less than two months from start to finish), the US Presidential campaigns begin over a year before election day.

By the time we reach November, we’re close to, if not already, burned out. …

The Kawakami novel challenged everything I thought about my future and motherhood

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Photo by the article author

The thrilling part about joining a book club is reading books you usually wouldn’t pick up.

This year, I read books from around the world — books from authors of color, other ethnicities, and who experienced true pain and struggle.

In these books, I learned about other cultures and religions, how immigrants and people of color face a system in America built for white Americans.

So when the next book announced was Mieko Kawakami’s Breasts and Eggs, I was eager to dive right in and learn about women and their experiences in Japan.

Who is Mieko Kawakami?

Mieko Kawakami is a Japanese singer and writer from Osaka, Japan. She recorded music in her early years, and her written work earned her several awards and critical acclaim. Breast and Eggs won Japan’s highest literary honor, the Akutagawa Prize. …

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