If you’ve seen my face around, maybe you’ve caught one of the few videos I’ve posted on my YouTube channel. Few might even be a little generous. Since 2018, I’ve posted less than 3 videos a year despite promises to post consistently or at all. I always settled on the reasoning that I just didn’t have the necessary time to create content once a week (even once a month). To be fair, I was heavily involved in University life and still needed to study. I kept convincing myself that eventually I would have time to post on a regular schedule and that would be my time. So when I moved into a new place and all of my previous excuses were no longer valid, I had to look inside as to why it was so damn hard for me to prepare content for YouTube. Like soul-crushing, tear inducingly hard.
Being on camera is not super natural to us
We’re too shy to take selfies in public, I think this phenomenon also applies to filming ourselves. I don’t know about you, but I’m very comfortable talking to myself and do it on the daily. As soon as I talk to the camera, I’m super aware of the fact that it is not something normal. I have a habit of smiling nervously and a majority of the outtakes are exactly that. Initially it also feels a bit egotistical to parade yourself around on camera for the internet. These are fears we have to overcome and that get easier with practice as we do it more often.
What the hell are you going to talk about?
Let’s pretend you’re very confident and stunningly beautiful so those insecurities can’t hold you back, what are you going to post? Finding your niche is the first step, what your brand will be. Even if there is something you’re passionate about, you have to know what to say about it. Will you give advice? Will you open the world to your life? What engaging content can you make based on your passion? YouTube is so overly saturated that it’s hard to come up with original ideas and you’ll have to think of your own spin or have a strong enough point of view to do what everyone else does without completely ripping them off or at least to stand out from the crowd.
Poor quality both in content and technical
This one impacts me a lot! Firstly, bad quality content. Now this can mainly come from a lot of self doubt from my experience. It can make you question yourself and wonder if your voice on the topic is even worth sharing. You might boast yourself as a fashionista, but your wardrobe screams basic or you want to share diy’s but your attempt on camera is a fail. Are you funny enough? Is what you’re saying worth listening to? On the other hand, can you afford to film a high quality video. Part of this is understanding that your first videos will probably not be high quality as you have to start somewhere, but it can be intimidating to try and be so nervous only to produce a low quality video. There are YouTuber’s who made brands and started off with 360p videos and their quality improves with time as they did as content creators. Nevertheless, less experienced creators might expect their videos to be amazing the first time round and be discouraged when they achieve below their goal.
What will people say?
Now this is probably what stops most people from even trying. In high school, there was a girl in my grade who started her own channel where she uploaded makeup tutorials. Kids are vicious in high school and a number of people would tease her, and I’ll never forget her attitude because it’s a level of resilience and positivity I hope to achieve one day. All she saw was that people were watching her videos and increasing her views on her channel. She seemed genuinely disinterested in the snide opinions of her peers. Aim to be her. People pleasing and fitting in feel so ingrained in who we can become that it’s hard to step outside of the status quo or do something that might make us happy. It’s easier said than applied, but why should we care what other people think especially if it’s something that makes us happy or has the power to change our lives? The inspiration accounts on Instagram have brought to my attention that people don’t really care about others and the attention (whether good or bad) will likely be temporary. We’re too busy thinking about ourselves to worry about others constantly. Yes, people can leave hate comments that will be there forever, but they don’t obsess about us (especially as we start out) as much as we imagine they would or do.
My final thoughts
I’ve put my YouTube career on hold as I recognise there’s a bigger issue that’s stopping me and it’s become something that’s not actually fun for me. I’m terrified of what people will say and what they think about. I’ve stunted my own growth, ability and dreams because I’m scared someone I know might say something that in reality I already concern myself with. These things that hold us back can be things that we grow out of. The more we post, the more natural filming will become, the less we’ll doubt ourselves, the more we realise that people don’t care as much as we think and the more our skills will develop. In the beginning though, it’s a nightmare. No matter how confident you can be in your work, you might not see the results that deem you successful until you post 100 videos. So you have to be brave enough to post the videos that aren’t A+ so you can overcome your fears and grow.
Here's one of my favourite YouTube Videos
Reference Katie Steckly, HOW TO GET OVER YOUR FEAR OF STARTING A YOUTUBE CHANNEL & BE CONFIDENT ON CAMERA