I met a new gym member on Christmas Eve in my boot camp class (forgive me I don’t remember her name ) and while I was training her (she was also the only woman brave enough to show up for boot camp at 6 am on Christmas Eve) the subject of feedback came up. Like myself, she was a Communication Studies Grad, and I was telling her how I have only really put my degree to good use once I started this blog. I mentioned to her that I’ve gotten some really good feedback from my blog, and that was motivating me to keep writing. But then she asked me what if you don’t get any feedback? I explained to her how WordPress tracks my stats for me, and I get instant feedback from anything I post, same with Instagram and other social media platforms that I’ve been using. But it did get me thinking… What if I don’t get any feedback? What then?
I think that we’ve become so used to getting instant feedback and instant gratification from a lot of the things we do, that’s why we keep doing them. How do you think the whole “selfie” phenomenon got started? We keep talking selfies because people keep liking them! I’m not gonna lie, I’m a ham. I LOVE attention, I do. I wouldn’t say that I do anything for attention, I’m not that insecure. BUT I do love the attention once I get it. I’m always looking for feedback. Especially now that I’m trying to build a brand for myself, and trying to expand my network, every time I post something, I check to see what kind of feedback I’m getting. Do people like it? Is it good? What should I post next? Am I on the right track? And I know I’m on the right track because of all the positive feedback I’ve been getting both on and offline. But what if I didn’t get instant feedback from all the things I’ve been doing?
I think we can get into a very dangerous place when we’re constantly relying on external feedback for approval. Yes, it’s great that we now live in world where we can share ideas instantly, and network with one another on a global scale. But you shouldn’t be posting things, or doing things “just for the likes.” You would be living a very meaningless life if everything you did was meant for the approval of others. It becomes very superficial, and dishonest if you start to live your life this way. Now this may seem slightly ironic coming from a bodybuilder, where the whole sport is judged based on your aesthetics… But there is no way I would still love the sport if I did it to be validated in some way. It is not worth all the discipline and hard work just to get “likes” on my Instagram photos, and a trophy. I do it for myself. It makes me feel great. The discipline that I get from the sport helps to give me focus and drive for the rest of my life and career.
The only feedback that really matters is the feedback that you give yourself. Whatever you post online, or whatever you do in life should feel good to you. If it feels right, if it makes you feel good, and if it adds to your life in someway then by all means keep on doing it. But if it takes away from you happiness in someway, if you’re no longer doing it for yourself, but for the approval of other people, then maybe it’s something that you should quit? People are fickle, one day they love you, the next day they can’t remember your name. Don’t let other people determine your self-worth or your happiness.