I’ve been struggling a lot lately with my sense of passion for what I’m doing and the motivation to continue doing things. I am letting procrastination get the better of me. I try my best to ignore the view or follower count of other people I interact with online, because we are all different and work differently. But it’s pretty disheartening to see all the work I put into my videos, or instagram pictures, or writing across platforms, all getting barely noticeable interactions.
My videos barely reach 15 views and I put hours of work into filming, audio, editing and thumbnails. My instagram pictures only reach 100 likes if it’s Harry Potter related and will maybe reach 30 likes on an average day. Jumping onto twitter tags and getting 10 likes compared to the hundreds other people get for less witty and less creative posts… My YouTube subscribers climb one person every couple of months, but my instagram swings up and down by 40 or more every week…
And with each platform changing constantly how they do things, I don’t know how I’m supposed to keep up. I’m tired, I’m sick, I have so many ideas floating in my head but not physical capacity to do them. Or even mental capacity a lot of the time, I can’t get past the brain block. I can’t stand to sit in a quiet room for the feeling of loneliness to settle in. The realisation of how completely and utterly alone and unappreciated I feel.
I am sick. But I love to make things. I can never be one of those people with a niche because I love to do everything. I love making my videos, I love writing blogs and stories and poetry, I love reading and watching TV and Film, I love singing and music, I love to dance and exercise, I love junk food but I love learning to take care of myself, I love taking photos and I love learning to love photos of myself, I love talking about the things I care about, I love drawing and painting and art and making presents for people, I love clothes…
But I hate the effort it takes to do all these things and I hate feeling like I have to improve my content rather than wanting to… I hate feeling like I’m not doing anything, or doing enough, or that people around me are thinking that. I hate feeling like I’ll never be independent and happy… I hate feeling like I wont ever make money doing something I love… or if I do I wont make enough to live off.
Making things and posting them on social media can be great but also soul killing. I’ve done my best over the years to ignore (or semi ignore) the numbers, the analytics, and comparing myself. I ignore the fact that I got more views and more likes when I had brightly coloured hair… what’s different from then and now? I’m still relatively the same person and creator… why does my hair colour change how many people interact with me? Why do selfies do better than pictures of my work, or my dog, or things I really care about?
Is it the people who are watching and interacting? Or is it the analytics and the way the sites work? Does my stuff get lots or thrown to the bottom of the pile because I’m not paying for it or I don’t have 1mil on every platform? Is it because I’m not skinny enough?? I see plenty of people posting the same kind of content as me… but they have more followers and they are much skinnier than I. I’m about an average size in the UK… Does that mean less interest on the Internet? I can’t help but see a correlation. Will posting more than once a week, or once a day attract more attention? Could I even physically manage that??
Some people who make content like I do, may feel like I have an advantage because I have a niche or marginalised experience. Sure, I can apply to more competitions for free, I can talk about things not many other people are talking about, and I can relate in a way others can’t… but along with that, there comes a lot of internet abuse. Trying to be authentic as a marginalised person opens you up to being shit on. I mean, look at the white cis able bodied male creators out there and all the crap they got away with and still get away with, and I am including gay men here for a lot of instances as well.
I’m just frustrated and angry and so, so tired of fighting to be heard and fighting to be as valid as other people in the creative industry. I feel like I can never stop doing all these daft little things on social media to remain relevant that I can’t take a moment to do something I really care about and really want to put the time and work into, or even BREATHE. I can’t breathe under all the responsibility thrust upon me by myself, and by society, and by my family (not my immediate family that I live with and give a shit about me…) and by my teachers past and present… by all the people who have no idea about my struggle. All of this whilst going in and out of hospitals and doctors appointments, and private therapies, and nausea, pills, pain, and pain again, and having so many stories to tell but they’re stuck in my head, they’re stuck in draft, and I slept wrong so I can barely move today, I need to buy this and see if that will help, and oh my God where did all my friends go, and well it would be nice if they contacted me surely they know, and I should be working to pay something towards living at home but I can’t keep a job either because I’m disabled or the employer is ableist, or because I’m queer, or because I ask too many questions, oh and why can’t my past stay where it is rather than sneaking up on me months later when it has finally been put away in a box in my head that I will never touch, and now I need therapy again because no one is listening…
No one is listening. But people like me are constantly told how useless they are and how terrible we are just for existing. People hate disabled people, people hate queer people (especially the bi and nonbinary kind), people hate mentally ill people, people hate people born as the female sex, people hate slow dyslexic people, but they also hate educated people, they hate poor people, they hate unemployed people, they hate witches so much they might as well be starting the trials all over again… and so much more that I do not experience but others do. And I’m sure they are as tired as me.
Where is our right to live a peaceful life? Social media inundates us with all the worst things that are happening in the world but also the most rich and successful people flaunting what they stole.
What I’m trying to say is the smallest things that affect us are mostly inherently political and systematic. People’s failure to teach, learn and express empathy.
But who cares right? As long as you’re ballin’.