Rejection! Its a strange thing isn’t it. To be more accurate, it should be perceived rejection because the truth is, rejection is often more about perception than reality!
I’ve been feeling this way about blogging recently. You spend time writing a piece that you really believe in, you post it with genuine altruistic motives, believing that it will help people or at least spark some chain of thought that will lead to some improvement in their lives or bless them in some way……..and hardly anyone reads it. This is naturally exacerbated when you look at other blogs that receive a million views, comments and likes on every post. Ah, comparison with others – such a bane of this modern social media life!
Imagine that you are giving a talk to 500 people and 5 minutes after you start, the first person stands up and walks out, followed by others, and then more, so that by the end of your talk 80% of the audience has left. You are likely to feel rejected and something of a failure. Well, sometimes blogging can feel like that although in reality, most people actually don’t know you exist, much less know about your blog. It is partly down to expectations, or rather hopes, as you put up posts with the wish that lots of people will read them and find them interesting, informative, challenging or whatever.
I am used to feeling rejection because this is my second blog – The Dorset Rambler has been running for several years now but it took a while to get going – and also I used to be a freelance photographer. I had a day job but in my spare time I would send ‘on spec’ submissions to book publishers and magazines in the hopes that they would publish my work. In those days, my submission would probably comprise a dozen or so transparencies or 10″ x 8″ glossy prints – the latter would be printed by me in my darkroom, usually working till the early hours of the morning. Return postage would be included, and most of the time would be utilised to send my package back to me unused, with a letter saying, ‘Thanks but no thanks’. Rejection! Felt rejection, because of course it was never a rejection of ME as they didn’t even know me……but it felt like it!
Clearly there is a simple solution to the pain of rejection – just stay in bed and hide under the covers and you will probably never feel rejection……but you won’t live much either! Not a great solution really!
You see, if you put yourself out there either in person or in writing, be it a blog or on social media, if you express your views, if you engage with people, you make yourself vulnerable to felt rejection. But ultimately, if you want a full life, if you feel passionate about anything, if you care about others, you do it anyway because you can’t help yourself.
I enjoy writing, I enjoy combining words and pictures, I love sharing because sharing always makes any experience better, and I care about people. We are community, we are fellow travellers through life, and making ourselves vulnerable has to be a part of that.
If you are a fellow blogger, you will, I am sure, understand what I am talking about. At the end of the day, we make ourselves vulnerable but we just need to remind ourselves that the rejection we sometimes feel is not necessarily reality, its just our perception.
Thanks for visiting Time to Reflect and for reflecting with me.
(All images and words on this site are copyright of Terry Yarrow and must not be reproduced without permission)