Hi! Marissa here. It took me a long time to come around to the idea that I should start a blog based on my life and experiences. I feared that I would come across as self absorbed (and who knows, maybe I do).

Yet something kept nagging at me as I continued to gain more experience in my career, in travel, in life. It was a slow realization that one of the driving forces behind my actions and decisions is curiosity.

Curiosity about cultures that are different from mine leads me to want to learn more about them, and immerse myself in them.

Curiosity about people leads me to want to meet them, ask questions, and gain a better understanding of their lives and views.

Curiosity about how history shapes the present leads me to places that preserve their heritage and actively share it.

Curiosity about earth science leads me to explore and study different environments and ecosystems, and learn how to preserve them.

Curiosity about my own boundaries leads me to continually find opportunities to (safely) get outside of my comfort zone.

Curiosity about what interests or passions I haven’t discovered yet leads me to try new things, even if I ultimately discover I am not into something.

Over time I found myself more deliberately feeding my curiosity with travel and experiences (local or abroad). The more I learned or did, the more I wanted to know.

As one question was answered, more kept popping up. Satiating my curiosity has become an endless game of whack-a-mole.

Through learning, experiencing, listening, and sharing, I think we can all gain a better understanding of others, ourselves, and the world around us. This is what I hope readers walk away with from my blog.

Yes, I talk about my personal experiences. But not for the sake of having it be about me; for the purposes of sharing, and hopefully sparking curiosity in others.

And also to show that being curious, allowing yourself to explore your interests, challenging your perceptions or beliefs, and taking yourself outside of your comfort zone not only allow you to grow and become a better version of yourself, but help you to contribute more productively to the world around you.

Since I began Life As Marissa I’ve done big and small things like going on my first international solo trip, overcoming concerns about skiing on a bad knee, discovering how awesome and underrated Detroit’s food scene is, exploring more of my own backyard, taking a flight just to get the miles, and questioning the impact of my travel and habits. All are meaningful in their own ways, and taught me something about myself or the world that I didn’t previously know.

What’s great about exploring your curiosity is it doesn’t have to involve spending a lot of money. I’m fortunate to be able to save up for big trips, but one of the biggest revelations I’ve had over the past two years is that I love watching ballet. I want to know everything about it. There’s no plane ticket necessary for that – I just head down the road to the Kennedy Center to catch a performance.

If this blog is successful, it’ll give you equal parts inspiration and practical tips and advice to feed your own curiosities, no matter what they are.

A Little About Me

Blogging is my side passion – in my day job I’m an account director at a content marketing agency in Washington, DC. My job requires a lot of business travel, which I find awesome because I get paid to visit different cities (well, meeting rooms) across the U.S.

I’ve seen far more cities around the U.S. (like one of my favorites, Nashville!) than I ever would have by just taking weekend trips. It’s a huge perk.

I’m a Midwesterner by upbringing, having lived in Missouri, Kansas, Minnesota and Nebraska until I moved to DC in 2011.

My thirst for travel began with a four-month study abroad in Granada, Spain in 2008. It was a life-changing experience; one that was so scary at first but transformed me inside and out over the course of four months. My world view was blown open and I’ve been chasing my curiosity ever since (even if I didn’t realize it at the time).

Photography is another love of mine. I get it from my mom. You’ll rarely see me without a camera in my hand – mobile phone or professional. I view the world through a photographer’s eyes, always looking for interesting angles or beautiful light. I think unique moments are meant to be captured, and I capture a lot of them!

I also love anything involving the outdoors – hiking, camping, exploring, you name it. I walk to work every day, rain or shine, because it gets me outside. Lately, my travels have prioritized being outside in nature – including an incredible two weeks of camping in Australia’s Kimberley region.

Finally, I’ve been an avid sports fan my entire life. I bring elements of it into the blog, and sports tourism is something I’m very interested in. I love visiting college football stadiums and seeing each university’s unique traditions. Old baseball parks around the U.S. are architectural treasures. And I dream of seeing a football, cricket, or rugby match overseas one day.  

Alright, enough about me for now. If you want to follow along, join the mailing list, find me on social media, or check out some of the posts.