It seems quite common for people to act as a collective when it suits their agenda and be divided when it does not. One of the global cultural phenomenon that had emerged over the years is the influencer culture. When I was younger there were international personalities that I liked and listened to but never really thought about unless I was consuming some aspect of their productivity. So I had my favourite singers, movie stars ect. However, outside of those roles I did not know nor did I care to get to know them more. I was fine just enjoying their talent for a limited time and living MY life for the duration of my existence.
Today I notice that there are many persons who are obsessed with those personalities they admire, which for me is a bit strange and also disturbing. The idea of an influencer has moved beyond the ubiquitous definition of someone who has the power to affect the buying power of consumers to, for many, someone who they see as their friend. Really an influencer is like a salesperson, there to sell you something not to be your friend. whether that thing is an actual product or a dream at the end of the day that is it.
Yet many choose to ignore this one unchangeable truth, and instead become so invested in the lives of these persons to the point where they ignore their own lives to preside over those they deem as being “like family”.
Sure there may be qualities in a person that you admire and they may motivate you in some way but the key here is that no matter what you do, you can never replicate them or their lives. The danger comes when persons ignore their reality to construct a possibility on someone else’s sand heap. The tide will always come in and tear it down. Many people rely on the voices of others to direct them and never the voice of the Almighty. They look at what others have achieved and think they can do it too, while being ill-equipped to do so.
On the other hand, one may say that positive influence should be separated from negative. While this is true, often times we do not realise that even when we aim to do what is “good” it is because we are influenced and not because it is a conviction that we have. What this suggests is that we want to please, or we want others to like us, so, we censor what we say and do to match the narrative we want others to have about us. When someone is influenced to do something “good” or “right” does it make being influenced a good or bad thing? Wherever we stand, we must be honest enough to acknowledge that being influenced is a way of life that has led to many unhappy persons, who seem stuck in slow motion, as they grapple with where their opinions begin versus those who have influenced them.