On the internet, you can be anything you want to be. It’s exactly what makes Brad Paisley’s song “Online” so humorous and true. I could tell everyone that I make thousands of dollars from home, have a weekend cabin in the mountains, and my husband works for Britney Spears.
However, NONE of these things are true.
As I skim through web-sites of various people, I find myself wondering on occasion how truthful are the things I am reading. Especially when the site is void of direct links or photos of the claims. Claims such as being published in countless magazines and on countless sites. Claims of meeting and interviewing celebrities. Claims of making thousands of dollars without even trying.
I ultimately wonder if the person is claiming to be more than they truly are. Many of the claims are laughable enough that you know inherently they are not true. However, in this more-is-better world, I also wonder if exaggerating claims is the only way people can be taken seriously. Its something that perpetuates and justifies the lies told in flashy sites and pretty words.
This leaves me overwhelmed and confused on how to proceed for myself. I never want to be anything but truthful in all of my endeavors. I fear sometimes the truth could end up undercutting my potential, because the truth is so often black and white, with no shades of gray. Then I remember:
I am the sum of my successes and my failures. I am my family and my friends. I am my experiences, my beliefs and my faith. I am honest. I am confident. I am scared. I have a lot to give, and I’m working to make my own opportunities to do just that.
So what if on paper, in black and white, I haven’t had anything published in a few years. It doesn’t make me any less qualified to be a writer. So what if I don’t hold a degree in graphic arts or creative writing or web design. It doesn’t make me any less capable of experimenting in all of these categories. So what if I never took a photography class. I have a Flickr account full of good photos that I’m proud to share with others.
July has been a rough month for me, and we’re not even half-way through it. I’ve lost a beloved pet, and a couple years of financial stress has finally caught up with me tenfold. Its all left me with a few cracks in my confidence of self, but my determination has doubled. Something that I think will carry me through. Something I KNOW will carry me through.
I’ve never been someone who gets knocked down for long. I assess a situation and proceed in ways I feel to be most logical and that will provide the greatest success rate. I’m not afraid to work. Just the opposite. I like to work. I just firmly believe you should always try to work smarter.
Life’s not black and white; there’s always more to the story. It’s precisely what I love about writing — finding the story behind the cold hard facts. I’ve been giving myself pep-talks the last couple of days, reminding myself there’s more to my own story…
There’s more to everyone’s story, and there’s no need to embellish it. Just be honest with yourself and your peers. Believe in yourself, and your success will happen.