I was one of those who self-censored; I didn’t say what I really meant or wanted to.
Most of the time, it was quite a subconscious thing where I would wonder what my friends would think. And then, far too often, I would give my content the ‘Church litmus’ test, which involves checking whether my thoughts aligned with the stances taken by my church.
And try as I might, I couldn’t escape asking myself, “Will they like this?” Well, no, not really.
Yes, I agree, they liked me in that sort of, ‘She’s a nice girl, who plays by the rules’ way. And not that, ‘Wow, this is a person making a major impact and not afraid to tell her truth’ way. Now, that’s what I would prefer.
Like millions who create on social media, I thought there was a ‘best way’ to do it. Ultimately, my content looked a lot like everybody else’s in my genre. Except even though I was emulating, my version was bland – like millions of the others.
Eventually, I got bored with my work and the millions of others.
I sat back and began to ask myself, what is it that I want to create?; what did I want to say? And what did I think the reason for all for this was?.
If I could consider my work to be an opportunity to make a difference in my life and the people I have chosen to serve, what am I gifted with to share?
My aspirations, pulsating with every heartbeat, went against everything I had been taught and was seeing.
My gut was saying, “No YouTube, I don’t want to create videos that are 10 minutes long. No LinkedIn, I don’t particularly like sending people to sleep with stories of how great I am. And No Insta, I no longer want to spend my weekends taking self-portraits to post just because that’s what everyone seems to like. Besides, we’ve been on lockdown a full year now, and I’ve lost all enthusiasm.”
I’m done. I’m gonna be fearless, and whoever thinks I am not qualified or authorised or good enough to do the things I want can get lost. In fact, the thought of people not standing my work, really criticising it, actually fills me with excitement. It means that I’ve moved emotions, which can be a good thing.
I can’t waste a second more pandering to ideals, losing myself, being lost, insignificant, not noticed, and unable to make meaningful change.
From now on, I’m fearlessly creating. How about you?
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