Does something only become ‘great’ at the point it gets an audience? Or when the audience reaches a certain size?
I don’t think so. If it’s great, it was already great before people found it.
The relationship between audience size, audience engagement, creativity and quality can be confusing. And if we worry about it all too much, it can overwhelm.
Logic tells us that the better something is, the more people engage. But there are other forces at play.
Timing, taste (no one is for everyone) and luck for example. All of which are a nuisance.
Confidence and Patience
If you want people to discover how great you are, confidence and patience have a big part to play.
And please note that if you rely on audience size and engagement as the only way to decide if something you are doing is great, you may be in trouble. Your spirit may become broken as you wait to be found.
What to do?
My plan is:
- Be as great as I know how, today (and then try to be even greater tomorrow).
- Do it for me (so I remain individual, true to me and not solely reliant on what other people do or say in order to assess my value).
- Be patient (because I do think that what I am doing is valuable, so when people do eventually find me they will benefit).
Being great and being found are two different things.
My friend Pete’s instagram page is great, but he’s currently only been found by a couple of hundred people (https://www.instagram.com/petezulu3/). It’s a shame in my mind. But not in Pete’s. Because he’s doing it for him.
There are numerous amazing things out there without audiences. And when the audience does come it doesn’t mean they suddenly got great. It just means they suddenly got found.
Is it possible that you will be great and never found? Yes. Of course. That’s the way it is. But that is not a reason to not to be great.
Being found is not what makes you great. Being great is what makes you great.
And if you get frustrated – remember, there is something much worse than being great and not being found.
It’s being found and not being great.