Caught up in numbers

As I’ve said, before, I was probably one of the last people to give Facebook a try. The thought of calling myself a blogger still doesn’t sit well with me, because I really don’t feel like I have the kind of content that would drive  an audience to this site consistently. I refused to even think of joining Twitter, until I realized the benefits of networking. (Which I must admit, I have met some very kind, helpful, wonderful people through Facebook and Twitter.)

But I’m noticing some things —  a lot of repetitive thoughts, revolving around followers, likes, comments; followers, likes, comments; followers, unfollowers, unlikes, likes, comments. And although this probably won’t stop any time soon, I can only try to dig deeper, and attempt to shed some light on something that is really starting to bother me.

Many people will say, it doesn’t matter how many follows, likes, feedback, site members, or shares they receive. I find that difficult to believe, when there is so much excitement about the number of likes a Facebook “fan” page has gotten. Sure, people who support you are important, but, I think the balance becomes lost in numbers. Some of us become so caught up in numbers, that the purpose of our gifts, fades to a speck compared to the number game.

I think of the number of unanswered emails. Then I ponder the followers, likes and comments. Some days I notice “unfollowers” and “unlikes”. More likely than not, I notice a lack of reciprocation (which is a huge pet peeve) in so-called reciprocal groups, where writers support one another .

Many days, I want to hop up and squeal, because just when I think I’m talking to myself here, on my Facebook author page, and Twitter, I find that someone claims that they are moved. Well, that’s what I strive for, but why do I hold my breath, waiting for someone else to validate something that comes from my heart?

For me, it sort of goes back to the little things — finding gratitude in the little things — which is becoming a huge theme for me. Gratitude does not exist in numbers. It certainly does not rest in the crevices of expecting reciprocation.  I know I’ve got to pay more attention to the fact that there is so much more power in releasing those repetitive thoughts, and accepting — appreciating — every step of my journey.

And as I posted days ago:
Dreamed it — it presented itself. As it presented itself, little by little, little was never quite enough. Now face to face with the dream, vision is blurred .. every little fragment is proof that its all coming together. But vision is blurred by the lack of gratitude. Gratitude must be present, or the dream will crystallize, dissipate and scatter.

  1. Mitzi said:

    I couldn’t agree with you more. I cannot tell you how many blogs I have started and then abandoned because while they appeared to start out with a big bang, the feedback slowly fizzled out. I don’t know whether it has something to do with the fact that everyone has gotten so used to simply “Liking” a status on FB or retweeting something they like on Twitter that the aspect of actually leaving any type of meaningful feedback has taken a back seat. I’ve resigned myself to the fact that I will mostly be simply talking to myself, but it does make one stop to ponder just how are we encouraging our fellow writers if we don’t let them know what we think of what they are sharing with us.

    • Really good point.

      I nearly gave in, last year, when I realized it was a lot more than feedback. It made me question my self, come to think of it. In speaking with people who have been doing this for much longer, it takes a lot of patience and diligence.

      But then, again, no matter what sort of networking: blogging, FB, Twitter, (whichever) I’m wondering how to take less emphasis off of comments and likes, so that I can enjoy it just like I enjoyed writing before I thought about sharing.

  2. Barb W. said:

    There is certainly often a lack of “social” in social media. I have to agree, numbers mean very little to me. I’m glad that I’ve built up connections over time, but the real joy is in actually connecting- having a conversation. That’s such an enriching experience! Thanks for sharing your thoughts with us!

    • Exactly.

      It should be more about connecting than numbers. Beautifully said.

      Thanks so much for stopping by 🙂

  3. I struggle with this constantly: numbers vs. loyalty. My number of followers isn’t huge, but the loyal followers I have are always interacting with my site, which makes me feel warm and fuzzy on the inside. I don’t want to be a “fad”- hip one day, thousands of followers, but can’t keep them. I much prefer a smaller readership who I know is actually reading, commenting, sharing, and will return the next day! 😉

    • I agree. That’s such a good way to look at it. And small, warm and fuzzy — I’d take that any day to cold and detached.

  4. This stopped me in my tracks: Gratitude does not exist in numbers. I agree! I have come to accept (and love) that I am a “small blogger” – I don’t know if that makes sense…. but i am content where I am at. I blog when I can (family first for me ALWAYS), so my blog gets neglected at times. I am OK with that, as long as I am not neglecting my family and myself! Thank you for your post.

    • Thank you so much.
      And yes. Family is first. The numbers bring you to a point of being beyond driven and focus can be clouded when it comes to what’s important.

      Small blog, large blog, I just want to provide interesting content, and release the worry of numbers. It’s a process. Because where is the balance between growing your site and being patient, allowing it to happen naturally? (I ask myself, I mean).

  5. I am having this same issue Rhonda. My site hasn’t made me the profits that we anticipated to make off of my site. I realize that it isn’t all about money but I am unable to work a traditional job and I started blogging to keep me busy. I never imagined growing the fan base that I have from social and networking alone. I have tried not to worry about the numbers but the reality is I have to make a living doing something. 😦 I am sad because my blog is my baby and I won’t be able to put the time I did into it anymore. I know that God’s plans are bigger than my own and I have to trust His plans.

    • Aww, wow. I’m sorry to hear that. Like you said, writing and having a passion can become almost like an extension of you … to cut back your time or stop hurts.

      But I agree that His plans are always bigger, and I hope that things work out where you still have time to devote time to what you enjoy. I believe you will. 🙂

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