I’ve never been one to focus on numbers. I started this blog because I wanted to write and honestly I thought maybe 4 or 5 people would find it and read it at most (I mean, my ultimate goal was to gain 70 followers in a year and I gained 3000+).
So, when I started to grow and brands started contacting me and asking for stats and mediakits and social followings, I was numbly responding with these numbers that seemed insane to me. Growth was unexpected but frequent and, I won’t lie, it spurred me on a lot. Suddenly I wasn’t only doing this for me, and I am a people pleaser, so this helped me push through.
However, naturally, over time things have come to a bit of a standstill. I’m still growing, but it’s not the steep incline that it was a year ago, and now it stands at more of a gradual curve. There’s nothing wrong with the curve because again, I started this for me. However, I am a massive perfectionist and relatively insecure, so it makes me feel like the problem lies within me and my content. Yes, the odd post I write seems to have a massive spike and lots of shares, but the majority seem to have the same reaction, and the growth seems a little… dormant. And I’ve noticed it have a massive effect on me and my motivation.
In life in general, I’ve had a problem with feeling underappreciated. Around January I took the (incredibly lengthy) Enneagram test (mainly as a joke), and it described my personality as a “helper type” which, honestly, couldn’t have been more accurate. I could go into the (shockingly realistic) breakdown of my personality, but in short, I gain most of my satisfaction around going out of my way to help others, and bring them joy. I feel incomplete and useless if I can’t help someone, and sometimes, if a lot of my help goes underappreciated, I feel like a total failure. The same thing has started to apply to my blog; if I feel like nobody has responded or resonated with what I’ve written then I feel a little worthless. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t intend to be famous or anything, and at the end of the day this really is just a hobby, but it’s starting to feel like I don’t mean anything, and it’s a damaging head space for me.
It’s made me really explore the relationship between motivation and appreciation, and how much of that you can receive from yourself before you need an external source. In reality, we’d all love to be able to turn around and say that all we need is self-validation, and nothing else matters… But how many people can honestly say that’s 100% true? Our brains respond well to external validation and often a good grade on a test, or somebody telling us that they like what we’re doing is the final straw that pushes us to try even harder. Whether we care to admit it or not, peoples opinions influence our own moods and, while this can be an amazing thing, it also makes it harder when you’re left being your only cheerleader.
I’d love to say that I’m independent and I don’t care, and in some aspects I don’t. For example, I can honestly say that my Instagram likes don’t phase me; I know that the algorithm is terrible and it’s gotten me to focus on posting what I like, regardless of how it’s received. However, I think because my words often come from a deep personal place inside me, and writing has always been my “thing”, I take it a lot harder. I’m thankful for everyone who does support me, and I hope that my content constantly delivers in the way that you want to.
I won’t lie, the majority of this post seems like a load of word vomit, but that’s what this series is about; the goal is to write what my brain is feeling, and this is where it’s at. I love this blog, and it’s going to keep going regardless, but I feel like it’s beneficial showing all sides, both the good and the bad.
Let me know what you thought, I really want to encourage discussion on this in the comments as I’m still trying to work out my own mind!
Lots of love,