The biggest reason we get stuck or overwhelmed is fear.
But that's not what we say to ourselves. We don't say "I'm stuck, where is my fear and what can I do about it?" (Ewww, hard!)
In fact, we probably don't say anything beyond "Hmmm. That's hard...
...I wonder who's on Instagram Stories today?"
But once we've procrastinated through Celeste Barber's latest hilarious and inspiring offering (hello, how amazing has her Tom Ford stuff been?) we often seek out a different form of procrastination, hiding, staying stuck and staying small. We tell ourselves we need more information, more knowledge, more qualifications, more strategies, more expert advice or another free podcast, blog post or download before we can move forward.
When we're stuck, our fear uses logic to persuade us to stay safe. We tell ourselves that all we need are strategies. Steps. A direct path from A --> B. That level of clarity is enticing, but not always effective in getting us unstuck.
Clarity in the form of "how to" is widely available online and it's often free, or cheap.
It's the 'soft skills' that are the most valuable and hard to get.
What use is grand knowledge of the latest trend in Social Media advertising or funnel building (easy to find online) if you have no idea how to (figure out) communicate who you are, what you have to offer and how it actually helps people?
What benefit is knowing how to use targeting to find your ideal audience on said Ad (easy to find the steps online), if you don't have enough deep understanding about them to tell a story that adds value and inspires them to want to work with you?
What benefit is knowing a strategy to attract your audience online (millions of people shouting at you about how to do that online) if you've not yet learned the art of dancing with the fear that comes up every time you're about to do something important, something that matters, something that not everyone will like?
Overcoming the fear, self-doubt and overwhelm, being brave enough to be visible enough that the people you're trying to help can find you, being able to define and communicate the unique value you bring to your industry or marketplace, figuring out what your own definition of success looks like so you can taking meaningful and considered action towards your own purpose, doing work that matters and creates change rather than busy work that makes you feel productive, these are things that are worth investing your time and energy into, and there is no exact blueprint.
They may seem like soft skills, but they're important and hard to master.
They're also persistent and insidious. If you don't acknowledge them they will still be there keeping you stuck when you have a head filled with knowledge, steps and strategies and no way to mobilise them.
You can't outsource this stuff. You can get help and I encourage you to both get help and build a support network around you, but ultimately you have to do the (deep, inner) work yourself.
How do I know? Well, my friend, it takes one to know one.
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