I have actually been considering the power of orange for the past week or so. When I first came to WordPress, the red numbers from Facebook, were suddenly and quickly replaced by orange stars, pluses and comment boxes. I found myself living for orange. Okay may be not “living” for it, but certainly hoping every time I logged in that I would see it, even sort of cheering for it in my head to see it. It was always so exciting to see that someone though enough of me and my writing to like or comment on a post or even to choose to follow me. It’s always incredibly disappointing when there’s white. It’s crazy to think how much power orange has for a brief moment in the day and really how addictive it can be. I’ll log in every so often after I posted something in hopes of seeing orange. I probably sound like I’m totally off my rocker but for me, orange is a sign of success. I want to be successful. Lack of orange means otherwise or so it feels like.
Lately, it’s been more of a bummer than usual. I was feeling like perhaps I was finally gaining some momentum on here, that I was getting a few followers, readers were liking what I posted and I’ve come in contact with even more blogs myself – always exciting.
That feels like it’s come to a screeching halt though. For the past week, there’s been very little orange coming my way. The likes, the comments, the followers (although to be fair that’s always been a little slow coming anyway so that’s not as bad) just seemed to stop or close to stopping.
The orange is just another symbol. As with the little red numbers on Facebook, the lack of orange means the lack of interaction. It’s frustrating. Couple that with the fact I’ve been finding so many amazing writers and reading what they have to say and how they say it, the lack of orange is now also symbolic of my increased sense of inadequacy. I’m out of me league on here, or so it feels like.
I never thought myself to be a profound or future Pulitzer Prize-winning writer, but for some reason in the past few months or so, I thought hey I can do this. I’m a pretty decent writer and it’s practice anyway – the more I do it the better I’ll become. My friends seem to like what I have to say and there has been some positive feedback on here so that’s a good sign, right? Perhaps, but I’m not feeling that at the moment.
I am my own worst enemy so often. I could easily turn this into a chance to really be hard on myself, criticizing every little moment, wishing I had wrote something this way instead of that way. I could analyze and then analyze again about what I did wrong instead of thinking of what I did right. I’m an expert at that. Part of that is the editor in me that’s grown since being a journalist, but I’ve always had a part of that inside anyway.
The expert self-critic that I am, this could become a total downer. The only good news is that because I am in a community of writers, I keep finding more writers who express similar points of views, similar feelings. It really helps because, quite frankly, it’s coming from complete strangers. Friends are amazing! The best of friends are those who can always support you and totally understand what you’re feeling, etc. I wouldn’t change my friends for anything, but when it comes to certain feelings, certain down moments, it’s nice to know you’re not alone. I already know this but it’s different coming from friends and family. They’re supposed to be there for you, that’s their job. It’s great but sometimes you need outside support. Sometimes it’s good to know a total stranger can relate to you and how you’re feeling; it’s good to hear from someone who isn’t likely to judge you or doesn’t know your past.
And so I shall persevere. I remind myself of what I said earlier, which is the whole point of this blog is for practice. I can’t get better unless I do so, so I can’t give up, not now. I’ve had a tendency to give up on a lot of things over the years because it was easier, there was less pain involved, less hassle. I can’t do that now. I’m getting older and I can’t afford to do that anymore. Time is much more precious than it used to be. I can’t give up on myself. It’s hard not to give up but I’m tired of the easy way out. I’m going to keep hoping for more orange but in the meantime, do what I must for me and not for orange. The orange will come once I’ve taken care of my business, once I get to where I’m going.