We had the good fortune of connecting with Noreen Kompanik and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Noreen, do you have any habits that you feel contribute to your effectiveness?
I call them the three Ps- patience, persistence, and perseverance. It’s rare that a business takes off overnight. So, it’s important to stay the course, keeping doing what works, and if it doesn’t, be willing to pivot and change course.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
One of the most important things I did in transitioning from nurse to travel writer was to utilize many of the skills I had in my first career. Professionalism, dedication to the profession, organization, these are all important qualities no matter what professional hat we’re wearing. Though it takes a good amount of hard work and long hours to launch any new career, staying the course is important. And doing what you love. I truly enjoyed my 34 plus years as a nurse, but, now, this time is for me to do what I love best and that is to travel and then write stories to take others on the journey with me. I’ve learned that a pay-it-forward mentality in my world is so important. When we reach out to others and offer to help make their transition easier, it’s good karma, and we are blessed as a result. The COVID-19 pandemic has been tough on many businesses, including entrepreneurial ones. One of the first things I learned was the importance of pivoting and writing stories about topics that were much more relevant, i.e. virtual travel, travel dreams, vs destination pieces about traveling to somewhere. What I want the world to know about my story is that it’s so important to love what you do and do it with love. The paybacks are endless.
I had my 500th article published, I became the Associate Editor of Food, Wine, Travel Magazine and I co-launched a Travel Writer Mastermind program with my partner, Kristi Dosh. I’m not sure where you want to include that information in.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
A lot depends if they’ve ever been to San Diego before and what their interests are. If this is their first visit, I’d make sure they see the top attractions that makes San Diego so unique. This is important to get an overall feel on what makes “America’s Finest City” so awesome. Our beaches and sunsets, Coronado Island and the Hotel Del Coronado, the historic Gaslamp District, La Jolla (Torrey Pines hiking, sea lions and harbor seals, ocean kayaking, and the parasailers at Torrey Pines Gliderport ). Watching the surfers in Del Mar and then having a Hula Pie at Jake’s is unforgettable. Dining with a view is a must- and one of our favorites is Island Prime at C Level. Seeing the city from the water is such a different experience, so a Hornblower Harbor Cruise is a perfect way to introduce friends to the lay of the land and everything that makes San Diego such an amazing waterfront and Navy town. Old Town San Diego is also a must-do where history and the fiesta lasts forever. Margaritas and Mexican food along with live Mariachi bands in Fiesta De Reyes are the perfect way to introduce friends to our beloved Mexican culture. And of course, one of our favorites is Balboa Park, with its magnificent museums. Views from the California Tower at the Museum of Man are unforgettable.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
My family deserves so much credit, especially my husband, Michael. Throughout the years, he and I have supported one another’s careers with flexibility and encouragement when the other needed it most. He believed I could make this transition from registered nurse to travel writer. I also have to give huge kudos to my adult children and their spouses, Kristy, Sam, Ryan and Humera, and my grandchildren Ryne and Reagan. Our family believes in supporting one another’s dreams and despite the fact that we don’t live in the same area (or even the same state in my daughter’s case), we are always there for one another and talk practically every day. The love and support of family is priceless.
Image credits: Noreen Kompanik