We had the good fortune of connecting with Lexi Coleman and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Lexi, what do you attribute your success to?
I changed my username on instagram to TravelingAlexis a few years ago. Looking back on it, I realize that means I started branding myself before I even had a brand. I first started TikToking for fun, purely to document my time living abroad and to have little video memories I could enjoy. I never thought anyone would watch and I think that’s why it’s been successful. It’s very easy to get wrapped up in trends and prototypes and I think had I been actively trying to be an influencer it probably wouldn’t have worked. I would’ve been focused on numbers, what people think and perfection — all of which make you lack authenticity. Secondly, my main goal has always been to share and connect. Whether that’s my daily experiences, where I’m going, travel tips or encouragement, I remind myself that others are probably interested in some of the same things as me. That act of connection makes content creation fun for me. I don’t necessarily need all the brand deals or followers. Being able to connect makes it worth it, and so I think that’s helped in my success.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I pursued a career in foreign affairs because from a young age I knew that our world was interconnected. I’m proud to be an American and consider it a great honor to represent the United States around the world. Once I learned about a career in diplomacy from a retired ambassador, I began studying ways to get into the organization. I worked my way up from intern to contractor to foreign service officer. I think research plus hard work is a great strategy for success.
I would say Traveling Alexis is the product of research plus hard work, but more than that it looks to show the world the beauty of travel and connection, and how to enjoy life.
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?
I’m currently living in DC and my recommended weekend would be taking a Friday to walk down the national mall and leisurely stroll into different museums. The National Museum of African American History and Culture is a must. Then I would finish my Friday night on 14th St, maybe grabbing dinner and drink at Barcelona or Pearl Dive. I’d wake up that Saturday and go to brunch which is a DC staple; you could do Mission or Le Diplomate and be in for good food and vibes. After brunch I’d just walk around DC. It’s such a walkable city. I would visit historic Howard University or the Frederick Douglas house in historic Anacostia. You could finish your night with spoken word and dinner at Busboys and Poets. Sunday would be a nice day for a relaxing walk around other parts of the city. You could grab lunch at the Wharf and try to catch a Kennedy Center show before heading home.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I have to shoutout God and my mom. God has shown me that the act of being selfless will bring goodness and blessings to you. He’s also helped me to understand that everything cannot be in my control, and that’s a part of life. Giving up control of the little parts of my life has been the best thing to ever happen to me. Second has to be my mom. She’s always been the boldest, most confident, loyal person that I know. Her womanhood was unapologetic, and she showed me and my sisters to always be ourselves no matter how different we were.