This blog post is a little different today, I'm writing about some of the struggles I had earlier this year and how I've overcome it - with some help.
Self Help in Small Business
At some point in building my small business, I decided to take the constant advice to stop caring what other people thought about me. I was liberated, free from their opinions, ready to be authentic.
It started first with my attire: I started being a fly gal, getting my nails done, getting my hair did. I wore fun printed shirts with cats on and copious amounts of eyeliner, and I felt good for the first time in memory. The reception to my wardrobe was overwhelmingly positive, but I let the compliments roll away, unheard. I don't care what people think!
I worked with people I liked and admired who sent me review after review of nice comments and feedback on my skillz. I had friends and family who shared their appreciation for my humour and companionship.
But I didn't hear it - I don't care what people think!
I simply stopped listening to what other people said about me, even when it was good.
This was …how you say… an “overreaction”.
I only listened to one person, who it turns out was the meanest person I knew. No prizes for guessing who:
According to I, nothing I ever did was good enough, fast enough, efficient enough, expensive enough, cheap enough, popular enough - especially since I never set any goals of what “enough” might look like. I subconsciously decided that I didn’t need goals or budgets: “I would simply know it was enough when it felt good.”
Combine this lack of goals and milestones with an endless feedback loop of just me criticizing myself? Uh oh!
I stopped booking work, I stopped marketing myself, all the while telling myself I was failing and couldn't figure out why.
Sure it seems obvious when reading it all lined up like this, but I didn’t realise what I was doing to myself until it was thrown in my face in an impromptu call from Human Design business coach, Adina Kroll.
Desperate for someone to tell me what to do, I booked a free call with Adina from a recommendation from Eloise, whose attitude and business I admired completely. Dragging myself out of bed, I joined the Zoom in my pajamas, ready for business advice.
Instead of discussing her various business coaching services, Adina immediately recognised that my lack of goals and abundant self hatred had not resulted in the success of my SEO content business - rather only produced an impossibility to create joy.
To Adina, it was obvious that the only person in my way was me.
Instead of the 30 minute sales call, Adina took me for a 90 minute impromptu life coaching session.
She listened to me whine about how hard my work was, how I was turning away clients because I thought I couldn't help them (I could), and how I stopped emailing and advertising myself.
At one point in our call, I basically FELT Adina reach through the screen and grab me by my pajamas.
“Let me just repeat what you just said back to you," she started.
"You pre-fail so you never have to try.”
A lump appeared In my throat.
“You have evidence that people want to work with you despite your best efforts to push them away.”
I nodded, the movement shaking a tear over the edge to drop on my cheek.
“You have an internal validation system telling you you're failing despite the evidence to the contrary."
I could no longer see the screen through the tears.
"Do you see how you’re creating all of your own problems?”
The snot dripped on my pjs.
"You say you started your own business to get away from the bosses who treated you so badly, but you've traded silver handcuffs for golden ones".
Barely comprehensible, I burbled out, “Then that just means I’m no better than them!”
She said firmly, verbally whacking me on the rose with a rolled up newspaper like a naughty puppy.
“No. Tell me why you’re different.”
“Because I didn’t mean to?”
“Yes. Because you didn’t know what you were doing. Intention is incredibly important. And now that you know you’re doing it, you HAVE THE POWER TO STOP IT. STAHP IT!”
It felt as though Adina astral projected into the room with me and gave me a left hook, right hook, Up, Up, Down, Down, Left, Right, Left, Right, B, A, Start.
I felt the Konami code kick in, and life became easier in the instant.
Adina said that maybe I should listen to what people had to say about me since it was all evidence that I wasn’t a failure - despite my own dedication to believing it was so.
We hung up the call and I lay on the carpet, sobbing some more as the weight of my own pressure and my own impossible expectations lifted.
Then I slept, more soundly and peacefully than I had in months.
I started to listen again to what people said about me, and started to love myself again knowing that I was loved.
I signed up to monthly coaching packages with Adina, including having a Human Design reading, which changed my whole life, how I run SEO Bitch and how I think about myself.
Through some whimsy, I now know to listen to myself, my body and my instincts with all work decisions. My travel anxiety completely vanished. I started making shitloads of money in all sorts of unexpected ways, and started approaching work with a newfound sense of creativity, and freedom to play.
This authentic reveal of self has hugely improved how I work, put the fun back into creative writing, and made incredible new connections that feel so peaceful. Now, I continue to grow my Faire SEO services and packages of SEO for small creative businesses in a way that feels incredible every day.
If you feel that any of this resonates with you and you want to find some peace in your own life, I highly recommend you talk to Adina. You can use this affiliate link here and I'll get a kickback if you book a Human Design Reading, which is lovely of Adina to set up for me. She also has loads of other business coaching stuff you can get, I work with her constantly.
Find peace and work the way that works for you, and join me in feeling fuckin rad.