Ding. Buzz. Clap. Like. Fire emoji. Heart. Repeat. We wait for the call of our devices, telling us whether we succeeded or not. Did our latest post create a viral whirlwind, or just a ripple of interest? Did we work hard on that edit, that image, that piece of writing, only for it to reach a limited audience? When there’s no response, the nothingness of it all feels full like a cast iron weight. When we create something, only for no reaction, no interaction, no engagement, it seems as though we created nothing at all.
We measure the success of an internet post through measuring external reaction. We measure the factors undetermined by us, in order to determine our own success. In doing so, we measure ourselves based upon the ways in which others value our content. We measure our success, based on others. Once we recognise this, we can recognise that we might find more success when we redefine our understanding of it.
We made that post, even though we didn’t feel like it. We chose to create, even when it was hard. We worked on our passion project outside of work because we wanted to. We succeeded the minute that we chose to create something, we succeeded in the minutes, hours, or days it took us to craft something entirely for ourselves.
Yet, we undermine this by deciding that success is something not determined by our dedication and our efforts, but something determined by the reaction of others. This can be nice for a while, if we find the little spaces in the social media algorithm which allow us to carve out a modicum of engagement for a while. Once this dies down, once the algorithm changes, once our posts stop reaching others for whatever reason, then what? When we choose to create quality content, we choose it for ourselves- and simply creating that content IS success.
When we start feeling as though we succeeded with each post and with each effort we make, we can truly begin to succeed. We enable ourselves to continue creating, even when things aren’t going as planned, and we ensure that we keep up momentum. In doing this, we move ourselves into a future where success is inevitable for us.
How do you define success online?
Featured image: Kewal via Unsplash.