Forgive me, but I’m writing this to vent a bit. Does anyone else feel like we’ve become too self-promoting? Everyone seems to be selling something! It’s impossible to watch television without more commercials than show. Our emails are burdened with promotions: news articles, doctor’s advice, “how to” sites… Almost everywhere we turn, someone is selling something, or they want to “SHARE” and want us to share in return. We are inundated with too much information, and it comes at a cost.
How did we slide into being such a self-absorbed country?
Looking back, we weren’t always this bad. Now it’s all about what can you do for me? LOOK AT ME, or look at me while you buy this product. Even though marketing and advertising has been the basis of my modeling career for the last 38 years, I’ve grown sick of it. Ads are everywhere we look as are TV shows that highlight the worst of human nature for all the world to see. Reality shows are all about “look at me.” People have become famous for the television show they’re on rather than for their talent, and companies hire people to represent their products based on how many “Friends” they have.
I’ve started feeling guilty if I spend too much time on social media. For starters, considering what I did for a living—its hard for me to have pictures out there that say, “look at me.” In addition, social media burns up too much of my day. I have better things to do like enjoying nature and long walks; finding people to engage with and writing articles that really help people… with no strings attached! I want to feel useful, not be self-absorbed.
When I was in Italy recently, there were too many people with selfie sticks, taking photos in front of everything. It ruined those places for me, and I didn’t want my photo taken at all. Out of the hundreds of photos I took, I may be in four pictures, and I didn’t buy a selfie stick, although they were for sale all around me. I was more interested in the historical treasure I was visiting and reading about the history, than taking a photo in front of it.
For years, I’ve sent out newsletters and now, blogs. I just want to share what I’ve learned in my years of working and meeting interesting people. Sure, I could find things to promote, but I want to encourage you to go out and make a difference in someone else’s life, and find ways to be less involved with yourself! Ciao!
When I was publicizing a book I wrote, I was expected to promote it (and me!) 24/7 and it was very painful. All of the writers I know find publicity such a hard process: if we wanted to sell sell sell, we’d be salespeople! I find it easier to promote the work of others who I believe in, which is why working in a collective is probably right for me. I can sell an “us”, but, like you, find the me me me that goes into building a personal brand uncomfortable.
Kim, you are singing my song! I am so worn out on sales pitches! Each of us has to determine our own definition of success, and not strive for what the world says we should have. Relationships are much more important than massive mailing lists or Facebook followers. I have removed social media apps from my phone (or un-social media, as I call them) and check in only once a day to reply to thoughtful comments. The noise of the world is overwhelming, and we must turn it off to savor the goodness of every day.
It’s a bit of a fine line to walk though, isn’t it? I complain about being on social media too often, too, but then again, if I cancelled my subscriptions to the blogs I follow, I wouldn’t be reading this right now. I think you really hit on it when you mentioned our so-called “friends” vs. getting out there in the real world, doing things and meeting people. We can’t stop technology, but we can decide how we want to use it.