I received a great question in regards to last weeks blog post. It comes from someone I’ve known for a while. Her name is April. Here’s the question:
Hey Mike! My biggest issue tends to come with actually writing the blog! I have tons of ideas for posts but I tend to over complicate the process. I write and before I post convince myself that it’s not good enough and discard it…
Let me start by saying this is such a great question because it hits at the root cause of what holds back most people. It’s also a question I bet 99% of people nodded along to as they read it. I know April wrote this question, but in reality, it could have been written by anyone – even me for many, many years of my life.
This is really a bigger question than just “writing the blog post”. It has to do with the pursuit of achievement pitted against self-judgement and self-esteem. There’s really only one way to conquer this self-doubt beast.
You have to create what you are going to create, then you will have to put it out there.
I know it sounds easy to say, but it is much harder in practice. Here are 3 questions I ask myself after I write something to decide whether or not I post it.
- Is it better than the worst thing I’ve read online?
- Did I do the best I could to create the best post I could?
- Would I mind if this post went “viral”
The first question is one that I use a lot when trying new things. I’ve ready some terrible blog posts, seen some pretty bad movies, and heard some pretty lackluster songs. In my mind, so many of us get stuck with “creating” because we compare ourselves with those at the “top” of the ladder. We think we aren’t that good because we are looking at the best. Flip that around and try it the other way. If what you’ve written is better than something else you’ve seen before – guess what? Post it.
The second question helps me know that I did the best I could. If I did, then what else can I do? Post it.
The final question is more or less about representing myself and my brand. I want to make sure everything I write serves my end goal. For me, it’s all about reaching business owners and people who want to achieve more in life. If my post does that in some way, then…. Post it.
So, my simple advice is to write what you’re going to write, then ask yourself those 3 questions. If you answer “yes” to all 3, then post it. If you’re unsure, tweak it until you can answer yes. Then post it.
The real secret is what I’ve said about 10 times now. Post it.
You never know what will work or won’t work until you put it out there and get feedback. Like the Chinese proverb says, the journey of 1000 miles begins with a single step.
Final thoughts on “Achievement”
I took a test last year called Find Your Strengths and I highly recommend everyone take it. You can actually get a free code to take the test if you buy the kindle version of the book from Amazon. My results showed me that my number one strength is “Achiever”. That basically means that I work extremely hard to achieve goals. I’m driven by the pursuit of achieving a goal more than the goal itself many times.
I think this is part of my “secret” to what I do. If you can afford the $10.99 (as of 8/11/16) then please take the test and find your strengths. Here’s what I learned about myself as an “Achiever”.
It’s very likely that you exhibit the mental and physical capacity to concentrate on various tasks from start to finish. Chances are good that you labor to create a future that bears little resemblance to your past. You choose to be a forward-looking person rather than someone who holds on to what was and never will be again. Because of your strengths, you do a fine job of imparting knowledge to individuals. You spend a lot of time preparing appropriate stories, vivid examples, graphic illustrations, or useful materials to enliven your training sessions. By nature, you channel your efforts into the task at hand. You persevere until you have gained the knowledge and skills needed to attain a goal. You can toil for many hours to secure your objective. You probably work hardest and most productively at a particular time of day. Instinctively, you exhibit a natural aptitude for overcoming difficulties. You are frequently called upon to identify problems and then make needed repairs or implement appropriate solutions. You work so diligently that you ignore all kinds of distractions.
If you end up taking the test – come back to the comments and share your top strength. I’d love to read all about it!