One of the biggest parts of entrepreneurship is communicating who you are, what you stand for, and what your business is all about. Without your messaging, you get lost in the red ocean with nothing to help you stand-out to your target clients. While nailing your messaging is one of the biggest struggles you’ll face as a business owner generally, it’s 10 times harder if you feel like you don’t even know who YOU are. So this week, we’re talking about how to get back to your roots. And then, how to amplify yourself to leave an impact and live with purpose.
But, before we jump in… buckle up. It’s gonna be messy for a minute, and if you’re resisting your shadow work, this isn’t going to help that much.
How to Find Your Authentic Voice
To develop your authentic voice, you need three things: 1) A strong sense of identity, 2) a vision for your work, and 3) a mastery of your platform.
If you’re struggling with any of these three things, it’s likely that you feel very disconnected when it comes to creating content (or even just having a conversation on some days). And it feels like a lot to fix before you can get started building your business — but it’s actually not as hard as you are thinking right now.
The easiest fix oftentimes if you have a strong sense of identity and a clear vision, is tweaking your platform. The world has embraced audio and video content over reading, for example. But if you’re a writer and not a talker, recording videos isn’t in your zone of genius. It will take you longer to get a take that you feel represents you than it would to write out the content and have someone help you create word-based content over background images and audio. Blogging isn’t dead either (thus why you’re here right now!)
If you’re a chatterbox, videos and audio content are perfect for you! But the big differentiator to ask yourself when deciding between the two is: 1) Do I enjoy constant set-up, putting makeup on, doing my hair, etc. Or do I only have time to hit a button and start recording? Live videos on Facebook, YouTube videos, etc. can take more time to create if you’re looking for quality. However, podcasts tend to be less maintenance and still build a great reach.
Creating a sense of identity and vision for your work can take a lot longer though, especially if you do it by yourself. Want to break through your barriers faster? Let’s chat and see how I can help you.
But to get started, ask yourself these questions:
- What is my biggest strength? My biggest weakness?
- What is my proudest achievement? Biggest failure?
- What am I worried about?
- What do I like to do for fun? Am I making time for fun?
- What do I believe in? What are my values?
- What am I interested in but haven’t tried?
- How are my relationships?
- What do I like and dislike about my business as it is right now?
- What does my inner critic tell me? (Is your inner monologue more critical than not?)
- I know when I’m stressed when I __________
- Is my work serving a purpose right now? (Or the purpose that I set out for it initially?)
Spending time journaling during a restful time can bring to light your next steps to getting yourself into alignment.
What Does Authentic Voice Have to Do With My Business?
Authenticity and voice is what separates you from the competition. It’s how people will find YOU instead of just another business owner trying to sell them something. We all have a deep desire for authenticity in our lives, but it can be hard when we’re constantly being told who we should be.
Tell me if you’ve felt these before:
- I’m highly critical of myself when I don’t reach the goals that I’ve set for myself and my work.
- Sometimes, it’s hard to determine if what I’m doing is serving my authentic voice or just a way to make money. (This can happen with any kind of business no matter how small or large!)
- I always worry that my voice will be too aggressive, or I’ll say the wrong thing and offend people instead of helping them.
- It can be a difficult balance between speaking up for myself in my business and staying silent when you feel like all eyes are on you.
- Saying things that make other people uncomfortable is never a good idea, but it’s also not always easy to know what is going to be seen as offensive.
It’s important for everyone who has a voice and access to the internet or any other form of media that they are able to use their voice without fear of retribution from others. As long as you’re posting in ways that make you feel good about yourself, it’s not anybody else’s business. If they do not contribute to your life in a substantial way, their opinions shouldn’t affect you. You’re not always going to please everyone, but it’s important for you to know that your voice is valid and worth sharing.
Finding a Balance Between Speaking Up and Staying Silent
It’s not always easy to know how to share your authentic voice without being vulnerable. It is important for you to find a balance between speaking up and staying silent in order to actually feel safe and empowered while doing so.
Speaking up can be tough, but it doesn’t necessarily have to be direct confrontation or criticism of others, either. You can speak up by telling a story, voicing your opinion, or coming to the defense of someone else being bullied — it’s all about knowing what is right for you and sharing with conviction.
Balance also means not speaking out at every opportunity either; sometimes it is better to stay silent in order to foster self-confidence and resilience because you know you will have opportunities to speak up again.
What Happens When You Don’t Share Your Voice
You always have the choice on whether or not to share your experiences with others, but you end up missing out on big opportunities when you don’t. Building a loyal tribe of clients and potential clients is all about sharing your version of the human condition, and attracting those that resonate with you. If you don’t speak up at all, nobody finds you.
But even worse than that, you may feel like the only one who feels a certain way about an experience. You lose a sense of your own identity while feeling lost in an echo chamber. Plus, someone else’s narrative about you can become more powerful than your own, which is super disempowering. Plus, it can even lead to depression.
You might feel like your voice doesn’t matter or that you’re too small to be heard, but we all have the ability and responsibility to speak up. Especially for those who can’t do so themselves. We are stronger together.
If you’re struggling to find your voice, let’s chat. I want to help you break your barriers even faster so that your business starts to grow, and you start to THRIVE.