I don't know the secret to success but the key to failure is to try to please everyone!
The story is told of a painter who desired to produce one work which would please the entire world. She drew a picture which required her utmost skill and took it to the public marketplace. She posted directions at the bottom of the piece for spectators to mark with a brush each portion of the picture that didn't meet their approval. The spectators came and, in general, applauded the work. But each, eager to make a personal critique, marked a small portion of the picture. By evening, the painter was mortified to find the entire picture had become a blot.
The next day the painter returned with a copy of the first picture. This time she asked the spectators to mark the portions of the work they admired. The spectators again complied. When the artist returned several hours later, she found every stroke that had been panned the day before had received praise by this day's critics.
The artist concluded, "I now believe the best way to please one-half of the world is not to mind what the other says."
People will always have an opinion about what we say or do. That is why we live our lives according to the words of the Bible --God's opinion. Then we will not fret over the opinions of others.
"No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will hold to one and despise the other."
I received this in a letter from a friend. I was always worried about the opinions of others and seeking approval from them. I spent a huge majority of my time trying desperately to please others. Now, I find myself caught up in the same type of situation. I was told to "go out there" and find as many people as you can to draw traffic to your website. I wanted everyone to check it out and tell me what they think. I wanted to see my numbers grow. I wanted every one's "approval" on my site. I wanted to know if they liked it or what they thought about it. But, all the time what I really wanted was for even just one person to purchase a Baby Keepsake Box and be able to send a check to the Ronald McDonald House and Children's Hospital. I wanted to know in my heart, that by doing this, I had helped a family stay close to their sick child and not have the worry about money like I had to at that time in my life. I find that I do not spend a lot of time doing what my original intention was. I spend time looking at other blogs, reading and commenting. I had to ask myself, "Why do I do this?" Am I letting everyone know I am here and I have read what they took the time to share with me? Sometimes, it is from deep inside them. Other times, it is about what is most important to them. Am I seeking "approval" from them when I leave a comment? Looking to get another number? The conclusion I came to was "NO". I am not seeking approval. I leave a comment because I wanted to share something back with you. I appreciated being able to read what you wrote and somehow, it made me open my eyes or made me laugh or made me want to help someone else. I don't need your approval to have my web site. If I never get an order, at least I gave it 100% of what I was capable of doing.
Recently, as I was "traveling through the web", I came across something. Well, I did not actually "come across it". I actually realized something. Most of the people I ran into, were just looking for "numbers". "How many followers do you have?" "How many people do you follow?" Is this because you own a website and want traffic or because you care about the people you follow and who follow you? Is it because you are seeking approval from the world wide web people? To me, it is not about how many "followers" I have. Each of you are special to me in one way or another. I do not follow what I am not truly interested in or I do not read. I am not doing this to get the approval of others. Just because you choose to follow me does not mean that, just for that reason, I will follow you out of fear that you will no longer approve of me if I don't. So, if I don't follow you, it is not because I do not like you. It is because what you blog about really does not "fit" into my life or have purpose for ME.
I follow for the following reasons:
*You give me inspiration
*You crack me up
*I can relate to what you write in one way or another
*You take awesome pictures
*I can learn something from you
*You help others
*You care about something I care about and have sidebar gadgets to prove it.
You see, to me, you are not a "number". To me you are special and unique and I want to thank you for what you give to me. I appreciate each and every one of you for what you give to me! I am not seeking your approval. I am not looking to increase my followers. I am looking to find friends I can share with each and every day. (When I have time).
Of my followers, how many of you follow me because you are interested in what I say? How many of you were looking for a "number"? I would like the opportunity to spend the next couple days (or however long it takes) to let each of the people I follow know WHY I follow them.
I am starting with Warren Baldwin of Family Fountain.
I follow you because I find inspiration in what you write. You bring thoughts "to light" that I find very fitting for my life. Your blog is uplifting. Warren, thank you for sharing your blog with me.
I am not sure, after reading this again, if I have two different subjects here or if I just rambled on trying to get out of my mouth and on to paper what I am trying to say. I suck at writing but, I am not seeking anyone's approval on this blog. I am just trying to get feeling from my brain (and it's still early and I have only had two cups of coffee and no chocolate yet so bare with me) and onto my blog. Maybe someone could leave a comment on what they thought I was trying to say? Preferable, someone who CAN write!
Have a wonderful sunshiny day everyone and GOD BLESS YOU ALL!