How is your religion similar to your friends not supporting your work?
People only support people other people are supporting — except for heretics, we support whoever the f-ck we want.
You never chose your religion. You were born into it. Believed it. Then you rationalised why it was the best. The correct one. And more importantly, you rationalised why others were wrong.
If you are African, your religion and second official language is chosen for you by your colonial master. If you are born in southern or eastern Africa, you are a Christian; if you are born in northern or western Africa, you are a Muslim.
You never actively chose your religion. You rationalised the choice that was pre-made for you. The majority of Christians have no idea why and how the books of the Bible were chosen or their authors. And they never did an objective comparison of Christianity to Hinduism, Buddhism, Islam or Atheism (yes, it is a religion). How did we make our religious “choice”? Our parents, teachers, neighbours, government, friends and everyone around us was Christian, and therefore, by default we became Christians.
What does this have to do with creative work?
Similar to our religion, culture and language, we did not choose the music, movies, or even the type of art we like. We were born and socialised into it. We rationalised our choices based on our socialisation.
Here is an example, let’s imagine you were born a conservative Christian, you would never objectively assess hip-hop music. Your framework of thinking will start from the perspective that hip-hop is devil’s music, so, even if you hear the songs Brenda’s Got A Baby or New Slaves, all you are hearing is devil’s music and you miss out on the beauty of poetry and rhythm in the songs.
This socialisation is true for almost every aspect of creative work. If you are a poet in a culture that is not socialised into appreciating poetry, you will not succeed. The movies we like, the music we like and the books we like are all based on our socialisation, not our own active choices.
This is why your family and friends are not haters
For an idea or creative work to be adopted by the masses, it should first reach a critical mass. That is, for people to support you, it should look cool to support you. And the way for it to look cool is to have more people support you. The reason you are in your religion is that you know someone who is of your religion. The reason why people will support you is that they know someone who also supports you.
Let me give you an example, from my experiences as an entrepreneur, I have come to realise that there is nothing comparative or that even comes close to a high converting advert than a client testimonial. A client testimonial simply says ‘it is cool to support this person’. And in turn, you get more people supporting you. So your friends are not exactly haters. They are humans. And the human brain only supports people when it is cool to do so.
Be like Jesus.
Jesus was the first multi-level marketer. When starting, he had no followers except his brother James. And he went out to personally recruit 11 disciples (and a network of friends like Lazarus). And he asked the 12 to recruit more, and they became 72. And he asked the 72 to recruit more and they became a multitude. And he asks the multitude to recruit more and everyone who is a Christian (like I am) is tasked with one very important task known as ‘the great commission’, that is, to recruit four of our friends (and we will get a signup bonus, figuratively speaking). Between zero to the multitude, it wasn’t really cool to support Jesus, even his family came to intervene. They were not haters. But when it became cool to support Jesus, everyone in former British colonies is born as a supporter of Jesus. The moral of this analogy is this: if you have one fan, highlight that you have a fan. And get the next one. And the next one. And ask them to recruit 4 of their friends. And the 4 friends to recruit 4 friends. Until you reach a critical mass. When it is cool to support you. And then you win!
To wrap up, we are socialised into our life choices, therefore, you need to cultivate your audience to socialise them into your ideas. That is how you become like Jesus. That is how you become a heretic.
See you tomorrow!