When someone has spent a lot of hours into something, slowly and patiently developing their skill, they can make it appear so easy and so simple that you might call it magic - or you might call it luck. If you've never taken the time to analyse your own success, or the success of others, then you won't see the principles, and when others succeed, it will bamboozle you.
Being constructive with unconstructive criticism
The other day I had a post on Steemit which did quite well - some pictures of my travels around Mexico, a kind of photo essay giving a little bit of insight into what my life is like. Many people liked it, though one fellow wasn't so pleased. He flagged the article, as if it were spam, and left a comment saying that he didn't understand the piece.
I was puzzled, and a little angry, though I couldn't escape the irony of worrying so much about one negative comment, when so many people enjoyed the piece. I thought about it for a day or a little less, and eventually responded:
Many years ago, when I was working very hard on my music, I remember I was at a party and my friend put on the Wu-Tang Clan's album Enter the Wu-Tang: 36 Chambers. He rapped along with Gza's verse and said "They're the best rappers. They've gotta be."
I was very angry, jealous and confused as to why my friend would be so enamoured with the Wu-Tang Clan, and then be unimpressed by my music. My response was to listen to 36 Chambers non-stop, for days or weeks on end. I listened with jealousy, hate and confusion. What's so hot about them? I thought.
It wasn't until years later when I listened to 36 Chambers with fresh ears, and without preconceptions, that I started to understand the grittiness and spontaneity that they had laid down. Now, it's one of my all-time favourite albums, and I realised I had so much to learn about hip hop, music and art in general.
I wasted years of my life with that attitude, and squandered many valuable opportunities because of it. My life would have been much more fulfilling if I had dropped my preconceptions within hours, rather than years - don't you think?
A few tips
On another post, I saw a fellow talking humbly and openly about his frustration on Steemit, and I took the time to respond with a few tips that I had learnt on Steemit, and a few tips I gained from my friends at Autonomite
In my experience, making good content is only half the victory. On our podcast @paradise-paradox, we've been publishing videos and audios for about 20 months, and from the beginning I thought that, if we make good content, sooner or later someone is going to notice it. That's true to an extent, but the fact is, normally if you publish something on the Internet and don't tell anybody about it, nobody is going to know about it. People will share good content if they get a chance, but you need to get the ball rolling. If you can put your headline and title image before 3000 sets of eyeballs, that's when things start to get interesting.
The other day, I heard @andrarchy say something like: Whenever I publish something, I want to show it to whomever might possibly be interested in it. Now, that's the attitude of a true hustler, and you can see that his results reflect that. Of course, he's not sharing trash either; he's sharing well-thought-out content which people want to see.
Get on the rocket.chat #postpromotion channel if you're not already. Join the 5 or 6 Facebook groups that exist for sharing Steemit content. Join writing groups on Facebook, or any other groups related to your niche. Submit your content to Reddit, Digg, Google, Bing. Most importantly, engage with people on those media where you can. From your perspective, it seems like a popularity contest. From others' perspective, they have asked for the support of their friends. People are rarely popular by accident; normally, it's because they've put in the effort to make connections with people.
The other tip I can give you is, you already have some content on here which is quite successful. I can see you've earned a few hundred dollars between two specific posts. So don't be so quick to say that the dream is short-lived when you've already achieved so much on here. Making $500 as a writer is nothing to sneeze at. By many measures, that's a lot of money. I wrote a blog for years and didn't make that much; I'm sure you've had similar experiences. Celebrate your victories, and analyse your victories.
I hope that gives you a few things to think about, and a few action points. Good luck my friend!
Considering how easy it is to believe that success on Steemit can be a question of luck, I decided to take the liberty of analysing a few cases, to get an idea of what really drives success on this platform.
You can see the passion that this man puts into his videos, and you can hear him talk about the standards he sets for himself. The man has a commitment to excellence, and, as mentioned above, when he makes something good, he does everything he can to show it to people.
A lot of people have attributed @stellabelle's success to getting on the platform early. But I know that there is more to her success than that, because I joined Steemit at a similar time. The fact is, she put in the hard work, she had the discipline to post twice a day, and she was willing to drop all masks and show people exactly who she was - not to mention the thousands of hours she put into developing her work before Steemit rolled around.
This guy consistently releases high quality content, and it's no surprise that he sees a lot of consistency with his results on here. When I saw he was posting on the site, I already knew (by reputation) the quality of his work and the content of his character, so I made a point of adding to some Facebook groups to help him promote it, and promoted some of it myself on our Facebook page. The kind of person he was, and the compassion demonstrated in his work, made me want to help him.
My friend Kenny has just started on the site, and I'm glad to see that he's already seeing some success. Again, the reason I'm glad he's seeing success is because I believe he deserves it, for being a unique and inspiring character. Kenny has a personal commitment to making things around him better, and doing things for people regardless of whether they can do anything for him. So, naturally people want to see him do well.
Looking at these characters, we can see that they're all very different, but we can see some common threads throughout:
- Be passionate
- Have a commitment to excellence
- Be compassionate
- Be honest
- Make people feel good about helping you
- And most of all... put in the ever-loving work
How I made $12k in one month by @stellabelle
The importance of riding shotgun by @kennyskitchen
Chef, healer, activist anarchist living on the road by @kennyskitchen
Mistakes I've made on Steemit and how I plan to fix them by @andrarchy
Please check out my previous posts:
Steemit's new economic paradigm, or: Why Steemit might just work
Mexico Mexiquito: photos from the magical country
Chained to a desk, stories about being employed
A life-altering peyote trip: a maybe-true science fiction story
Happiness is a skill
Staking a claim on the Steemit homestead