The missing link; where talking about yourself as a creative creator
Written by Jess Robson.
My palms were sweating as my fingertips started tapping on my laptop keyboard. I had to write about 200 words to describe myself, my work, what I create for clients, etc… and I was paralyzed.
My brain was flip flopping from “this has to be perfect” to “you don’t have enough experience” all the way to “why should I have to put what I do in a box?!? Down with labels!”… and nearly everywhere in between.
And that was simply in the first attempt to write a LinkedIn bio five years ago when I quit my job and went out into the wild world of freelance writing.
Things have changed (not the fact that my hands get unusually sweaty at times, unfortunately) since that fateful day of bio-creation.
From looking at the words themselves to the mindset behind what was making me use them, the act of creating real, honest sounding—and feeling—self promotion materials has gone from panic inducing to completely playful.
It took looking under two BIG rocks to start to tease out the hangups I was finding myself experiencing.
1. Telling, over selling.
I often found myself, even in roles where I was hired to sell, feeling hyperconscious around not wanting to be “too salesy,” and that mindset was shutting me down before I even would sit down to write. Or in the days of hospitality and retail, turn me into a bit of a shy human a touch too afraid of making people uncomfortable.
But, when I figured out that telling a story, sharing an insight, giving a piece of my own personal experience was more powerful than know the “right thing to say,” the way I “sold” started sounding totally different.
When it was honest and authentic to my words, my voice and aligned with the values I have around transparency and sharing the human experience of this thing called life, I still got to empower others with a piece of insight that might help them buy (from me OR from someone else), and it felt completely different. Good… or great, even.
Telling a story and doing it in your own way can be the antidote to feeling bad for taking up space… and shift you into total confidence in putting your self, your business, your work (et. al.) out into the world.
2. In their words… or mine?
The second stone that needed turning over was the one that told me I had to do it like everyone else.
That I needed to sound a certain way, use words or phrases or statements or slang or “buzzwords” (lovingly renamed as #barfwords).
I was also often wanting to sound professional. Which, at the time, totally took the personality out of my words and my work.
Doing a deep dive into language and sorting through what words I thought I “had” to use versus the ones that actually felt good, and like me, gave me creative license to express fully while still saying the things that mattered.
And a heads up: sounding professional is as subjective as most things in life. Because in my world of writing, my profession is expression. Which actually means that sounding professional equates to being able to express my own voice and tone and use language that is clear, describes me and my services… you get the gist.
Stepping into confident creative communication.
Feel good self promotion or self expression means doing a bit of excavating to understand what your own feel good terms are; what fits, what doesn’t, the stories you’re comfortable sharing, the conversations you want to lead… all of it.
Getting your mindset dialled in before digging into whatever it is you want to write or say sets you up to create with more ease, more alignment and a more authentic expression of yourself.
Which, ultimately, is what gets you the gig.
If you’re interested in doing the digging and starting to get some traction on creating empowered, expressive and aligned communications for your business (or heck, yourself), join me and Arts Whistler on March 28 for an evening dedicated to doing exactly that.
Jess Robson an expert listener and language-distiller. Her mission is to support people in shuffling from suppressed to expressed – and finding the words that best speak their magic into existence. She brings the ability to make your value speak for itself; and give it that ‘shouting it from the rooftops’ megaphone-clarity. She helps your readers get to know you, get to know your business, and establish the number one most important relationship element every business owner is looking to create: TRUST.
Find out more about Jess Robson
Join Jess for an upcoming session on copywriting, marketing and self-promotion:
Arts-U: Creating Self-Promotion That Gets You the Gig
March 28, 2019 | 6-9pm | Maury Young Arts Centre
If writing about yourself makes your heart start to race then this session is for you!