Networked Faith

I am going to be honest…

As confident as I am in what I am, and what I do, I have my moments of doubt. And I question things.

Will all this time blogging ever amount to anything? Will spending countless time helping and serving others – most who never return the favor – ultimately matter to me? Do people have the first clue how much I care about their success?

I am trying to look back to a few years ago, when I wasn’t active on Twitter – when I wasn’t blogging – when I built my business serving entrepreneurs ONLY attending face-to-face gatherings of real people. And I wonder…was I a better business person then?

Did it seem easier? I could more easily tell when people had no interest in me or what I had to offer. I could observe body language that told me they didn’t care, or had no budget, or didn’t believe what I was suggesting was possible.

But then the social web happened. A mass engagement of people all around the world connected and networked. And the world, my world, changed forever. Was it for the best? I have no doubt that it complicated things.

But was it for the best?

Some hide behind their avatars with no sincere intentions of following through on their promises, or willingly or unwillingly spam us, and still others use the social web for pure self-promotion. That can’t be helped. And that won’t change.

But as hard as it is at times, I fought hard to keep the faith. And I gambled that it would pay off. Many colleagues fell off the wagon and gave up. But I soldiered on (stupidly I sometimes wondered to myself…).

But I am starting to hear from people who appreciate the approach of selfless giving, I have received countless messages of support and encouragement for my half-marathon training, made some true friends with people I feel like I can rely on (and whom I have never met personally), and made some friendships that will have a lasting impact on my life. And yes, I have landed business.

So you have to have faith. Faith in your community. Faith that some people you’ve connected with do matter to you, do care about you, and will be there in times of need. And do matter to the growth of your beloved enterprise you care so much about.

The simple lessons here? Have faith that the time invested in caring for people will matter. Have faith that a sustained effort over time will matter. And have faith that the rewards for this sometime lonely effort will be worth the frustration that you will most certainly feel.

You will have ups and downs. You will get frustrated. It does get very hard. And it would be very easy to lose faith. We all fight it. We all sometimes long for the easier way. But it is not there. The grass isn’t greener… At the end of the day, you need to have faith that building relationships and helping people matters.

Despite the fact that thousands talk about it, and so few actually do it, a firm belief in that principle can itself, be remarkable in the eyes of others.

Do you have faith?

  • http://www.minimalistbusiness.com Pawel @ MInimalist Business

    Hey Todd, aren’t doubts part of the process? Thanks to them we ask ourselves questions that ultimately (although not always) lead to strengthening our beliefs.

  • Todd

    Yes Pawel, you are absolutely right. And that is exactly what is happening to me. Thanks for saying in two sentences what I am not sure I got across in an entire post… ;-)

  • http://ypsgroup.com Todd Youngblood

    Todd,

    I certainly have my own doubts. Can’t tell you how many times I’ve asked myself the question you posed, “Will all this time blogging ever amount to anything?” I’ve got a few anecdotal success stories, but the data doesn’t justify the effort I’ve expended …yet.

    It’s nice to know I’m not the only doubter who intends to persevere!

    TY

  • http://www.projectauthenticity.com Robyn

    Todd,
    This is a powerful post. I do notice all you do to give to the community and speaking for myself, I greatly appreciate and respect you. Keep believing…it makes for a much better story!

  • Todd

    Todd, let me tell you pal… You haven’t been blogging long enough to have any discernible data. The difference between man and boy is that most little boys give up after a few months… There are millions that start blogging. Men stick it out…

  • Todd

    Robyn, trust me my friend…you are one of the people who make me believe….