YouTube is a scary place to be. There are videos that never do well, videos that go viral without expectations and people who assume the role of a cynic with a mask of anonymity. I observed many other student YouTubers for months to understand the problems they went through. Based on that, below were the three reasons that held me back initially from publishing a video on YouTube, and why I later did it anyway.

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1. Time spent in making the video – and its aftermath:

Of course, I had no clue about how much time would be spent though. Easily 45-50 hours from ideation to execution was spent in creating my first (or technically, second) video on ‘How To Get An Internship In The US – Graduate Student, Columbia University’. Link: This might not be the best representation of the average time taken to make videos, as I know I can make one using a lot lesser time, based on its content. First ones are always the hardest.

However, it’s still a significant investment of your time. Time that you could rather spend reading, learning and exploring. And once you release a video, you are childishly anticipating likes, comments, and shares. Let’s agree – we all do that or would do that. So much of your time, which otherwise could be invested somewhere else, would be lost here.

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Finally, I decided that I would go ahead as the pros (helping people, sharing your knowledge and experiences, and getting better at expressing oneself) outweighed the cons. I also decided that if I see myself spending too much time replying to comments and sharing it on social media, I would begin to time block myself and restrict doing that to specific times only in the day.

2. Negative comments:

I’m fortunate to not have received any so far, but it won’t be long before someone anonymous playfully or wistfully comments something that ruins your day. Every single YouTube that I have seen so far has endured this, and the best way to respond is obviously to not respond. 

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I was not sure if I was prepared enough to absorb these comments. However, I knew this will be another small learning point in life. Eventually, you have to understand that only those people’s opinions matter who truly look out for you. Everything else has to be deflected by a barrier.

3. Exposing yourself and your experiences to the world:

It seems ironic. That is the whole reason to even begin, isn’t it? However, I’ve seen how as you start getting more views, you also start getting more people who observe even the most trivial parts of the video. This could end in disastrous results.

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That is as scary as it is dangerous. The only way to overcome this is to tell yourself that for every such person, you will have ten others who enthusiastically support you on your work and will enhance the positivity in your life.

That said, I loved every bit of making this one and I am absolutely thrilled to keep making more videos. I have a couple of ideas to execute already, including:

  1. A video answering people’s questions on Internship Prep
  2. A vlog on my first day here
  3. A video on a day in my life as an intern at Salesforce
  4. A video on productivity
  5. A video on following your passion
  6. A video on the best books I’ve read

If you have more suggestions, do shoot them my way. I feel like I might run out of ideas once I execute these (hopefully not!). And may I just say, a huge thanks to those who spent their 16-17 minutes watching the video, downloading the PDF guide and took time to thank me. These are the things that truly make my day, without a doubt! 

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Cheers! 🙂