10 Signs That You Are An Influencer
We see the glam of being an influencer. We see that this person has 20K followers on a social media platform. We see that this person is marketing a book that’s on the Amazon Bestseller List. We see that this person is getting likes and comments every minute on posts. We think this influencer has it made. This influencer is an expert. This influencer has a great brand. This influencer is making a lot of money simply influencing others.
We can never imagine a depressed influencer who is spending 2 hours a day in the therapist’s office discussing all the issues that come with massive exposure, the loss of anonymity, the loss of privacy, the increasingly difficult problem of imposter syndrome and cognitive dissonance.
So there it is: it’s tough being an influencer.
I’m not a real influencer. But, I know a few influencers in the blogging and writing communities that I’m a part of. Talking to them, I realized how the stories are so similar, I just had to write an article about this.
Trolls and stalkers sending “vile” your way in buckets
I cannot tell you how many times I scroll through comments on influencer’s posts and see trolls after trolls. People make it their business to be mean to influencers. It almost seems like competitors hired these people purposely to take you down.
Be happy. Trolls and stalkers just validate your influence. Don’t let them control your emotions. Block as much as you can. Use law enforcement when required.
Offers come your way. Doors open automatically for you.
You hear all your friends say that too many offers to choose from is great. But, you don’t feel that way. It seems that there is no way to weed out good offers from bad ones. You just have to get to all of them. In this case, hard work is an understatement. Immediately, you need to transform into a superhero overnight.
You are never sure if you are fulfilling your obligations because there are simply too many of them. So, you just take it one day at a time.
People are dropping your name.
One of the first things you will notice once you become an influencer is the sheer amount of people who will be quoting you and your name. You will have no idea who these people are. But, you know that they are helping to spread your influence around at the same time as getting their influence out there as well. Some of them will feel a bit like stalkers showing up at the places of your work saying that they know you from somewhere.
The best way to deal with this is the mindset. Just disregard any unwanted attention and bury your head in your work asap.
You have trouble soliciting “honest” feedback
Suddenly, everyone says you are great. You notice the grammar errors. You notice that you are only “half” funny. But, everyone’s laughing so you must be very funny. But, the truth is that everyone needs to improve.
Always, always find a mentor who is way better than you in this thing that you do. Then, ask for “honest” feedback.
People talk about you using adjectives you would never describe yourself
Is this even for real? People talk about you as “awe-inspiring”, “expert”, “skilled”, “successful”, and “bigger than life”. You have no idea where they get this from. After all, all you did was chronicle a part of your life or work. In real life, you grapple with the same mind-boggling problems of living everyday life as anyone else.
This is the time to stay grounded. You, as a person has not changed one bit. Whatever happens with your career, it’s you in the role of the influencer that everyone’s vying for.
Think of that as another person, an alter-ego. It’s only one role that you are taking on in life. You are a person who takes on many roles in life. Most of them are not famous like this one.
People claim they know you at very odd run-ins
You go to the park. Someone recognizes you and carries on a conversation with you. Midway into the conversation, you realize that they are in this very place because they found out your itinerary. They were there, especially, to meet you. You feel stalked. But, somehow, you feel that you have no right to be unhappy about this. After all, this is the latest evidence that you are now “famous”.
You feel awful as if your privacy is invaded. You are right. People did violate your boundaries. But, at the same time, you have no idea if they have good intentions.
So, take it as evidence that you are now “famous”. Then, just tell the person that you are busy. You have no time to deal with their shenanigans.
Lawsuits come your way
Many stars and politicians deal with this. Suddenly, there’s a necessity to retain a lawyer because every little thing you did in your past life is up for a close examination. If you are lucky, it’s only your work that people will scrutinize. But, otherwise, everything in your relationships are up for grabs.
Brace yourself and find a good attorney. There will be equally good people who want to help you. But, you will have to pay them well.
You feel like you are living two lives
After a while, your alter-ego feels like another person you are inhabiting the body of. Even if you are authentic about who you are and present that as your persona, you will still encounter instances where your real life doesn’t match up to what you see as your alter-ego’s life.
This is temporary. Knowing that it’s only a temporary misalignment helps.
With some proper soul searching, you can come to terms with the fact that you are who you are no matter what is said about you, how you present yourself in public and what you do for work.
You can’t finish anything
When everything you do is scrutinized, you can’t seem to finish a thing. The truth is that you feel the pressure for everything to be perfect now. Before, an article took an hour to write. Now, an article takes four hours to write. Even then, you are not sure if all your tenses are correct, or if you used the right words. Are you offending anyone?
Stop! Don’t even go down that road. In imperfection, you are perfect! Just publish it. You’ve spent enough time working on it.
You can’t make an honest friend
All your friends seem to suddenly fall into two categories. Neither of these categories is welcoming. One category is envy. This category contains all your friends who are just suddenly envious of your success, talking to them seems like you are walking on tiptoes. On the other hand, some friends suddenly see you as someone who can do-no-wrong. When did you become someone with no flaws? There are so many unrealistic expectations about what you can accomplish, all you want to do is bury your head in your pillow.
Don’t sleep all day. Instead, go for a walk. Talk to strangers about their day. Focus not on yourself but someone else. Have a child. Take care of the elderly.
Do anything besides your day job. Once you bring “human-ness” back into your life and related to people (who might not know you as your alter-ego) as they are, you will feel “normal” again.
If you see all of these signs, then you are probably an influencer. I’m sorry that you have to deal with all of this. But, success comes with its own hurdles.
Things don’t get easier just because you’ve succeeded at climbing your mountain.
Things just get more complicated. So, prepare yourself mentally. Put all the hard stuff into perspective.
All of these are just challenges. They are different than the ones that you’ve dealt with before. You have to make adjustments.
But, they are simply challenges like any other.
Deal with them like a pro that you are.
What are you waiting for?
About the Author
Jun Wu is a Content Writer for Technology, AI, Data Science, Psychology, and Parenting. She has a background in programming and statistics. On her spare time, she writes poetry and blogs on her website.