So, yesterday I was being astonished at the fact that teaching people to be themselves is a thing.
But I wasn’t clear – or, rather, I re-read that post when it arrived in my own inbox and it made me go, “Oh shit – that’s not what I meant at all!”
So let me give it another go: I do think it’s bonkers that business owners struggle to be themselves. After all, it’s much easier to be yourself than anyone else. But I think it’s bonkers because that’s the world and the business landscape we’re in – not because I doubt the need exists.
As Rob, one of my subscribers, said to me this morning:
“It’s funny, I think the ‘be yourself’ thing has almost become a fad as a piece of vanilla business advice. In practice however I think it is hard to do.”
He’s absolutely right. There seems to be a proliferation of “be yourself” people around, but most of them – as far as I can tell – are surface deep. It’s tough to find the real thing, probably because (as Rob says) it’s hard to do in practice.
I struggle with this too, because to get the stage of utterly not giving a fuck what people think is really hard. It’s not about deliberately upsetting people, either; don’t misunderstand me. It’s about being who you are unashamedly, but also always striving to be the best person you can possibly be.
We’re all bombarded by corporate stuff all the time, so no wonder we think we have to be something we’re not.
Then we’re also bombarded by macho internet marketing dudes going on about how they’re “crushing it” and “hustling” the whole time – and they’re offering to help you do that too. Thing is, though, they’re not helping you to be more you and build relationships; they’re trying to teach you to be carbon copies of themselves. Because doesn’t it seem like there’s an awful lot of them around?
Anyway – ignore the “crushing it” people, because they’re a flash in the pan.
And instead, go and watch this video. And sign up for Megan’s emails, because they’re great. They’re among the few I read when they arrive in my inbox. She’s the real deal and she’s spent a lot of time working out who she is and what she wants to do.
Now she’s put it together into a fantastic programme.
As far as I’m concerned? You don’t have to make up a story about who you are. You are enough.
PS Yes, this is a back-pedaling blog post– and it’s reminded me that I really should read my posts properly before I release them into the wild. Usually, I do. Also, it occurred to me that I’m fond of telling people to be themselves, as Rob said. But actually doing it? Yeah, that’s tougher. So go check out Megan’s video here.