Today I went on Persicope for the first time.
Before getting on this platform I asked a few folks who gave me their own takes and thoughts. Trust me, they were so varied. They were excuses as well as affirmations that pumped me up.
I had excuses just like every other human out there. I had doubts on my mind. I had my fears.
Would people watch me live? Would people love the way I spoke? Would my connectivity be okay to stream well without cutting off? Would my home suffice to stream from?
Those thoughts slammed my mind with a ferocity that could cripple a giant. Nevertheless, I went ahead. I decided I was going to get on, never considering the clouds that would form the rain. I knew somehow that the ducks would line up for me to shoot.
I thought about the people I’d be helping by doing it. That put the fire to my butt and I just did it.
In my work with people to help them build their own platforms so that they can increase their visibility and influence, I discovered that they battle with three things.
The first is the desire for validation. As humans this can be be appreciated. We want to be lathered with adulations for doing a great work. When we create stuff and those commendations don’t flow in their numbers, we may give up, pack our tools and slide into obscurity.
The second is the fear of the unknown. I see this echoed overwhelmingly by individuals who desire to commence a new journey away from what they’ve been used to. A lot of the people I’ve met truly desire to quit their old paths (most particularly their jobs) to focus on a new path.
In my own opinion, this fear is unfounded, most times stemming from what people have dunked into our psyche, perpetuated over the years by a culture that’s scared to attack stereotypical statements.
A child doesn’t fear what a gun can do because she is not quite knowledgeable about its deleterious effects. So it’s absolutely preposterous when I see folks enact a scenario that’s non-existent and become mowed down in their desire to stretch a limb. Nevertheless, the fear is real.
The third is yardstick for success. We have been told to think great thoughts and we will emerge the greatest. Muhammad Ali’s death has thrown up an opportunity for motivational speaker and preachers to turn up a storm of messages hinged on his pronouncements.
He declared himself the greatest which is not bad. However, the downside to all the messages that will be dished is that everyone who listens will want to strive to be the greatest. Folks will want to be the most talked about. They want to be the number one name on the lips of people in any industry.
. Think of all the athletes at the coming Olympics. Thousands of them will compete, but only one will win the medal. What happens to others? Are they failures? Ponder over those.
What if we concentrate on being the best we can be for ourselves and not conforming to being validated by the IMF or Fitch Ratings or magazines or whatever yardstick that society throws up? What if we focus on waking up to become better than we were the day before? What if we define greatness by deciding to raise our game every passing day?
As a writer, it’s good to win the Caine Prize or some other, but the issue is that I may tie my greatness and sense of importance to that.