Will You BEND or Will You BREAK?

If you have been actively engaged in and around social media for the past 4 years, you have seen trends, patterns and algorithms change rather quickly.  Ten years ago, the average attention span for browsers was 12 minutes, now it’s reduced to a staggering 5 minutes and becoming less and less.

Social media has definitely created a new culture and habits of engagement and frankly, an addiction.  It has become a way of life for most people and for some who are otherwise shy and reserved offline, they feel bolder and more expressive online.  They are finding  their online voice, building their communities and are communicating and are committed to staying connected.

As much as I am fully present and purposely engaged in and around social media, I am feeling a HUGE SHIFT is upon us.  There is a shift from pure text to images, from long videos to snippets, and from slideshows to Infographics.

While those are obvious and imminent shifts, there’s another kind of shift that’s happening that is quite subtle but disheartening nevertheless.

I have noticed in recent months that more and more of my peers from budding business owners from 4 years ago, have decided to throw in their towels.  In the past 2 months alone, I have read 3 autoresponder emails from very promising peers from years past, saying their “Good-bye” to their subscriber base.   They all shared their sentiments of how they used to think that there was hope in making money online and after giving it their best for 4 years and investing hundreds of thousands of dollars into it, that they now believed that they just built their pies in the sky.  They have decided to give up and let go of the dream.

I have major empathy for these individuals as I absolutely know what they mean about NOT SEEING RESULTS.  I was there.  I know how it felt to have sleepless nights.  To cry at night… to doubt myself… to question my purpose… to experience guilt of putting business over family and worse to compromise my values.

Many, many, many times in the past 9 years of being an entrepreneur, I too, have thought of throwing in the towel.  For some pleasantly strange reason, it was as if God simply wouldn’t let me do that… Every time I would think that, I get reminded of the lesson I must learn and as soon as I acknowledge the lesson, another door opens and I end up holding on to my towel…

There is a BIG SHIFT happening and the question is will you EVOLVE and FLEX with that shift? Are you equipping yourself now in preparation for that shift?

In the Philippines, we grew up with a lot of bamboo trees and I remember as a young girl, I would watch the bamboos sway with the wind and wondered how they could withstand storms and strong winds.  As I asked that question, a book was given to me and it was called “Pliant As A Bamboo” and that’s precisely how the author described the Filipinos – “pliant as bamboo” because despite the storms and floods of life – both literally and figuratively – there is a certain resiliency and tenacity that shines through.  I didn’t know what pliant meant then, so I looked in up in the dictionary.

PLIANT – flexible, pliable , bendable, elastic, supple, malleable, workable, plastic, springy, ductile –  but the best description that was etched in my  young mind was:  DOES NOT EASILY BREAK.

To this day, when I am faced with a fork in the road, a major decision, letting go, a breakdown before the breakthrough, the question I ask myself is this:  “Will I choose to be as pliant as the bamboo or will I choose to be as brittle and easily breakable as a nettle tree?”

Which one would you rather be?

Remember – Your Message Matters… You Matter!

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