If you’re a creative person following a passion you’ve come to the harsh realization attracting fans to your own Field of Dreams isn’t quite as simple as building it–the it being your blog, your INDY book, your paintings, your poems, or the handmade jewelry you’ve invested countless hours creating. All Ray Kinsella had to do was build the field and wait for his dad and the others to come.
From the moment, I decided to release the voice in my head onto the page I expected the masses would flock to my site and devour my words eagerly. Granted, I am a fiction writer and prone to blurring the lines between reality and my imagination. I was laboring under a misapprehension. The reality is, to be seen and heard, requires the same diligence invested in your chosen passion. You have to plug away at your brand day in, day out.
It was shocking to learn to write a book wasn’t the hardest part of becoming a writer. Writing, as it turns out, is actually the easiest part of being a writer. What was/is the most challenging aspect (for me) was/is having to shed my natural loner/shy inclination and seek out the masses, entice them to spend a few minutes on my site, open up my circumspect self and invite others into my imaginary world. Let them know I was not an ogre and you know, kind of nice, even friendly. ARGH!
How to break down my barriers, quite frankly, has challenged me, even woke me at 3 am.
“How do I change habits of a lifetime?” I’ve whispered under my breath in the still of the night.
Unlike other closet introverts, I am not enamored with social media. There are the benefits of stalking if you’re into that sort of thing. Me, I can’t be bothered, mostly because I am not all that interested if someone ate a cheeseburger at 2 am and found a rat hair. Honestly, there is the issue of time and my lack of it.
I’ve also wrestled with the notion that sharing intimacies are not all that different from a confession. The only difference is a person can confess, disclose, and share, virtually, and avoid the uncomfortable act of having to do it face to face. Regardless if you’re a millennial, baby boomer, older or younger, a confession is a confession, is a confession, whether it is uttered by the person sitting front of you or in one-hundred-forty characters of less. If my lover were proposing or dumping me, I’d like to be in the same room and not get the news on my phone or read about it on Facebook. I am a private person, and when engaged in a tête-à-tête, I prefer that the other party is nearby. Go figure.
In short, social media hasn’t liberated me. I continue to prefer up close and personal intimacies, and thrive in a space I inhabit inside of my imagination and love the quiet time when I am inventing.
I know there are others out there in the vast universe who are like me. We would probably be besties if we weren’t so circumspect, but…well, we haven’t taken the plunge, batted our eyelashes and said, “Hey, do wanna chat, maybe share digits, even write a blog post together. Oh to be so daring, so bold and brazen. If you are out there and looking for a kindred spirit…
Some guidelines to help overcome your quirky self and be less shy:
- Allow your confident inner self to shine.
- Use your voice to express the thoughts that you are thinking, don’t fret if someone disagrees. An opinion, is just that, a person’s point of view. Conflict can be creative.
- When nervous about stepping outside of your comfort zone, remind yourself what you have accomplished to date.
- The next time you are staring down the Twitter window. Go for it, share your quirkiness with Twitterdome, tell them how you feel about Miss Piggy and Kermit’s breakup and Mr. Trump’s hair fashion.
- Take a deep breath and then let go of what you think you can’t do. Also, don’t be disappointed when whatever you say or do goes unnoticed. Trial and error, baby. Modify. Be prepared to edit.
- There is no wrong way to be you–the right way is whatever you decide.
- Put it out there–tell the world you have a little stage fright when it comes to tooting your own horn.
- Confess what you have always believed: Passion is meant to be shared and spent freely, never hoarded or wasted. Share yours, now.
- And finally, don’t worry, be happy. In the grand scheme of things your reserve is part of who you are and when ready you will overcome whatever it is that holds you inside and your inner self will break free.