When I started writing, I never thought of building an audience.
Now after a 7 years, people say that I am an ‘influencer’. I won’t lie and say I don’t like it. I do.
We all want to be ‘famous’.
Let’s face it. We may not always admit it, but being famous or receiving fame has a certain appeal to it.
Fame is vastly appealing as the popular notion is that fame equals success. Who in the right mind wouldn’t want to be successful? It helps to feel less insignificant; like a big fish in a small pond.
The craving for our (deserved) fame can be beneficial in more ways than one.
We are ready to go beyond the expected, we can surprise ourselves and others with extraordinary ideas and measures. We might even go to lengths to make the world a better place.
But what happens when the instinct for fame overpowers our goal in life? Is being famous the ultimate objective? And what happens when our standards drop or when it can cost us our values and ethics?
The problem with fame arises when we start seeing ourselves only with the eyes of others vs how we really see ourselves. It’s so easy to get lost in the admiration that others feel for you that we forget who we are and why we started doing what we intended to do in the first place.
Warren Buffet has an interesting conundrum that he states to help you determine where fame stands for you –
“Would you rather be the world’s greatest lover, but have everyone think you’re the world’s worst lover? Or would you rather be the world’s worst lover but have everyone think you’re the world’s greatest lover?”
Depending on what you’re after, you’ll probably respond to the above question. But make no mistake. The idea that fame is success as immortality is an old one.
But what good does it serve anyway?
Here are a few we can think of – when you are ‘famous’, no one will reject you. You won’t ever face any peril in life. No harm can come your way if you are famous. You will finally be taken seriously. You will be eternally happy. You’ll be the boss of you and others.
It acts as a faux security blanket so that no harm comes your way.
But here’s the problem. Fame cannot guarantee happiness, just as commitment doesn’t guarantee results. It may not even be enough to keep you safe – mentally or physically.
So why is it that we crave fame?
A universal to all dreams of fame is its merit in success.
We act like fame is the key to happiness but we forget that famous people are unhappy too, we just don’t know it.
As becoming famous has never been as easy as it is now, the reality gets blurred. When we see a famous influencer or a celebrity on social media, we forget that it’s just a projection and not real life. Just as we know that the movies and series we see are a work of fiction, we need to believe that their Instagram handles are a work of fiction as well.
They might be famous, but they might not necessarily happy. And they are famous because they are good at something they do. They might be happy because they are good at something they do, not cause they are famous.
There’s only one determinant of success, and that’s the passion for your craft. No one becomes the best at something because they crave fame.
They become an expert for their obsession with their craft. And all of it takes time, perseverance, and discipline.
Fame and success are then just by-products.
If you recall, I never intended to build an audience. I just wanted to work on my craft of writing.
The engaged audience that I have now is just because of that.