(This starts in a rough way, but hear me out, this actually goes toward a direction of hope and possibility, I promise. It’s like if I want to go to the Jersey Shore I’m going to have to deal with New York City traffic, and the smell of the oil refineries on the New Jersey Turnpike along the way…)
Confession: there have been times where I strongly considered hiring someone more “alpha” to pretend to be me, put out my messages like me, just bigger and buffer and more “appealing”. I know, I know it’s ridiculous….but in reality, despite all the replies about “we want the authentic you”, truth is it probably would’ve worked for a little while. Milli Vanilli, anyone?
Another similarly screwed up thought: I could scrap all of this today, and start up a movement based off of fear, rage and hate-even something impossible to hate, like puppies-and there’s a good shot I’d be followed by millions and by Christmas never have anything close to a financial worry again. Gross, I want to be wrong about this but realistically, I’m probably not.
People talk en masse about how much we desire authenticity and raw vulnerability, I believe they intend to but when the rubber hits the road programming wins out and they choose the garbage. If I had a dollar for every time someone reacted to something I posted and then followed up with sharing some hate-stenched meme or fake news article. Not meaning to call anyone out but we do what we’re hardwired to do.
(I have no idea if I just made up “hate-stenched” but I kind of like it)
I love to rage out about the algorithms and assorted other BS but the reality is these apps make bank by giving us what we want, whether we’re willing to admit it to ourselves or not. Does it have a lot to do with being programmed to choose the other stuff, sure, but if we all REALLY did something to demand something different from our media and forced their hand they would give us what we want. Not expecting this to happen anytime soon, creating a wave of action beyond just grumbling and moaning is a long game that would need millions of people doing hard things, and it’s possible but it’s a long, hard road to get there (by design).
I was chatting last night with a dear friend and we were talking about something similar, where I know personally this struggle. Knowing, KNOWING that I have things to say that many people need to hear but they don’t get out there in any real way.
I post all the time what I share on my Medium and my KoFi or other things I have going on and it feels like I’m just talking to a wall. That voice loves to scream “See? Nobody cares. They will never care about anything that comes from someone like you” when more often than not people never get the opportunity to care or not care because they’re never allowed to see them.
Despite the voices, the latter is what really resonates with me because I see all the time really brilliant, insanely talented people who frickin’ deserve the world but are struggling with the same exact thing.
How many are giving up their purpose and passion, the reason they were put on this earth, because those that need what they offer never were able to see them?
Look, I don’t want to be that guy that whines about the system all the time, but pretending that everything is awesome isn’t helping anyone. But there also has to be acceptance of “okay, this is what it is, it sucks, but it is what it is.”
And then from there, once we realize that we are each ants trying to fight a boulder, we can receive clarity on what isn’t working, especially as a single ant.
ALSO embracing that this is NOT about giving up. It’s about being patient with finding the opening to get past it. Boulders are huge and ants are small, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t loopholes and opportunities, even if they don’t seem obvious.
What is in our talents and skill sets that can get us out there? Maybe there are ways to work around the system, but also what’s possible within the system?
Most importantly, how can we really support each other in outside the box ways to get out into the world? One ant struggles to get attention but a whole colony gets noticed really damn quick.
Instead of so many of us fighting single battles in vain on our own, what would be possible if we learned how to better band together as communities to really do the thing? What if we could offer support via our superpowers, and receive support with the struggles while we continue to build our own solid, sturdy foundations? Yeah, we deserve to thrive both individually and in community, this is how a healthy society is actually supposed to work.
I don’t really have a whole lot of answers or magic bullet solutions, and I suspect most don’t. But I do believe there’s plenty of room for many of us at the table, and while I may not know what the path is, I’m choosing to continue to believe that one exists for us to do our thing in our way.
No need to hire a body double or make that hatemonger heel turn quite yet. I’m going to choose to continue believing in what I have to offer and what kind of support and healing it can bring to those who are looking for it. I want the rest of us who are out here on similar missions to continue to do the same.