Internal vs external input

There’s a note on my desk that says, “Where’s the helpful external input?”

It’s from my notes about personality types for my upcoming course, Making Better Business Decisions. For introverts who shun external input, or for those of us struggling to use social media as a positive tool, rather than a massive time and energy suck, this question feels important.

And it is important to understand why we sometimes crave external input, and other times run from it. Sometimes we just want someone else to give us the answers, and other times we want everyone to back off.

For me, positive external input includes educating myself and receiving help and encouragement. It might be a book, a podcast, a coaching session, or a pep talk from a friend. Sometimes these things don’t work, but I have a list of the things I know usually help on my noticeboard.

When external stuff gets in the way, it’s usually because it’s triggering comparison or negativity in me. That’s when I need to go inside.

In the world of social media and an internet full of advice, opinions, and a million self-proclaimed experts, it’s really easy to get caught up in what other people think, do and decide. It’s easy to compare yourself, to think you “should” do it the same way other people do it (whatever “it” is).

It’s also easy to get totally distracted by world events, arguments, politics, and despair. Not that these things are always distractions – sometimes they need our urgent and active attention. But when you’re running a business and avoiding your good and necessary work, they can be distraction of the highest order.

So. Where’s the helpful input?

Who are your trusted advisors and guides? Why do you trust them? When do you seek them out?

Which areas of your business require external education or input?

Which areas of your business are 100% your realm?

Do you need to dial up your external input? Or do you need to dial it down?

Not all external guidance is intrinsically bad (hi, I guide people for a living), but when we give all our power away to other people on the internet or in our immediate vicinity, we’re not really living our dreams or building the business we really want.

More soon

To discover more about how you process internal vs external input and other decision-making processes, stay tuned! I’m working on something good for all of us.

Book out the next six Friday mornings…

A little later on today, I’ll be welcoming some fabulous business owners to the Self Care on Social Media for Business Owners course platform and opening up the community.

These are the moments when everything starts to come together!

The course doesn’t start properly until Monday, but there’s something lovely about getting familiar with the space you’re going to be spending time in. It’s like a cat padding around the sofa before it sits down.

There’s a seat for you if you’d like to join us

Is this community waiting for you? And are you ready to be part of a change in the way we see social media and its influence on our businesses? I’d love for you to join us.

You’ll need:

  • a hunger to change the way you interact with social media for the better
  • mostly free Fridays from 10am till 12noon (though recordings will be available too)
  • a lovely notebook
  • a printer or PDF viewer
  • an investment of £140+VAT or three payments of £55+VAT

You’ll learn:

  • the unique way I started thinking about social media to help myself and my clients create an authentic voice
  • how to balance the benefits of social media with the challenges and pitfalls
  • how to put together a self care manual for using social media that’s totally unique to you
  • the difference between positive connection and mindless scrolling – and how to get more of the good stuff!

And that’s not to mention six weeks of access to coaching with me on this topic and your business in general, plus lifetime membership to the group and materials. In fact, signing up this time means you’ll be able to take the course again every time I run it in the future. Because things change and we need to refresh ourselves.

My passion and purpose

I created this course for one reason in particular: I know that so many amazing, talented, hard-working business owners are losing themselves in an endless scroll of comparison, distraction, and insecurity.

Had I a magic wand, I’d wave it and wish you all that time and energy back so that you could put it back into your business and experience far more success and joy. I’d get you out of your own way (because boy do I know what that’s like!).

In lieu of a magic wand, I created this course. It’s one of the closest things to magic that I know how to do, and I really, really want you to benefit from it.

Throughout the course, you’ll be able to:

  • examine your own use of different social media platforms
  • identify what works for you and what doesn’t
  • get excited about different ways of viewing the platforms you love
  • download worksheets
  • read articles
  • watch videos, including bonus interviews with people I love
  • ask questions and tap into my 9+ years of working with small creative businesses

Not just a pretty face

I’m talking about Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest and Twitter, of course! Well, and you and me.

Social media isn’t just about a great photo or reaching a “perfect” standard of content. It’s about connection, resonance, and meeting people where they are.

The impact of a strong relationship with social media isn’t to be underestimated, and it’s my firm belief that your investment of time, energy and money in this course will pay off within months, if not weeks, of completing the course.

Get stationery shopping!

I could talk for hours about the benefits of the course, and I hope if there’s anything you’re not sure about by now, you’ll get in touch and let me know.

If it’s for you, please do go ahead and sign up before Monday morning, and then grab a lovely notebook so that you’re ready to start.

If this isn’t for you, thanks for reading this far and supporting my work! I hope we’ll find something else to connect with soon.

Enthusiastically,
Jenny x

Here's the thing: the things we tell ourselves on the scroll

Tell me if this sounds familiar:

You see someone online doing something similar to you. Or something you want to do. You freak out.

You decide they’re doing it wrong or not the way you’d do it, and they’ve already cornered the whole market doing it their way so there’s no room for you.

Maybe you find yourself into a rage about how they’re making a ton of mistakes and screwing people over by charging for something so cheap. Or that they’re undercutting you and can’t possibly be making any money. Or maybe they just don’t have the design skills you do, or the communication skills. Or the experience. Whatever the exact detail is, the situation pisses you off!

Or you decide you could never do it that well. They’ve already done everything possible. They’ve done it better than you, or they’re first to market and that’s all that matters. Maybe they took an idea in a slightly different direction, and it’s your belief that it’s better. Perhaps they seem like they’ve got it all together already – effortless product launch with recommendations and referrals and people shouting about how wonderful they are. You’re not pissed off, exactly. Deflated.

And so you stop. Or you procrastinate. You stop putting your talent and effort and energy into something great. You try to find something else, even though you already have something wonderful, and unique. You tell yourself all kinds of stories about why it can’t happen now, and why it hasn’t worked out, and why you should focus elsewhere.

But ultimately it comes down to this: you’re just afraid.

Our brains are really good at being afraid. And turning up the volume on doubt and fear and just staying nice and safe. Our brains want us to be safe.

My opinion? Social media has such huge potential for connection. But it can also be hugely destructive force, especially where our soft spots and creative fears are concerned.

Here’s the thing:

The first step is always cultivating awareness. When do you tend to get sucked into The Scroll? Is it first thing in the morning? Last thing at night? While you’re waiting to pick the kids up? What time are you trying to fill by scrolling through Facebook or Instagram?

And then there’s being aware of why you get sucked in. Are you trying to find connection online? Are you really getting it? What does scrolling offer you? (Hint: if it’s numbness or distraction from what you really want, it’s time to change.)

These are the first big questions in my upcoming course: Self Care on Social Media for Business Owners.

Because we need your work in the world. And your business deserves great marketing. But if you’re getting stuck in fear and overwhelm and anxiety and just plain old procrastination, we don’t get to buy your products or see your work.

We’re going to tackle the fears that change our behaviours. We’re going to talk about how to live closer to your dreams and your fears. You’re going to get MORE out of social media – and out of LIFE!

I don’t want you to post less or market your business less. What I want is for you to feel confident in why and how you use social media, and what your contribution to the shared space is.

Let’s cultivate awareness, but more than that. Let’s change how you feel and how productive you are.

The course starts on Monday 30th October. Will you join me and other brilliant business owners?

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