If all information out there drowns your sanity, there may be some things, even expert advice, that you can just ignore.
I’ve been running around like a headless chicken for five years now.
Believe me, it’s probably from the mounds of research I love to do.
When I wanted to publish a book, I discovered all the ways not to do it.
Then I looked into starting a blog, and already in 2013 a lot of people said not to. A Google search into opening an Etsy shop provided more confusion than clarity – thanks to the mounds of information. And let’s not even jump into social media, podcasts, SEO, business marketing, courses, webinars, subscription boxes…
I have looked into all of them.
There’s a lot of expert advice out there, telling you one thing or another you have to do. It gets overwhelming when you try to build something – a dream you have maybe? – and there’s no sure path.
Am I the only one who gets overwhelmed by all the people who “know” everything and will impart their wisdom for 497.95? It’s not that we don’t want to invest in ourselves, our businesses, our blogs, but what will work for us in our specific situation? With our specific needs and bents?
I won’t say I’ve figured it all out now, but I did invoke a few simple rules that make this whole building a platform journey a lot easier.
What to do with all the expert advice
Listen to everything, follow no one. I heard this a while ago. It takes the pressure off when you just don’t know what to do. And it means that when you’re learning, when you’re researching your dream, you also don’t have to do everything people tell you.
This felt like a breath of fresh air when I gave myself permission to take note, but not always take action. We can pick and choose what we incorporate into our big goals. You don’t even have to take this advice right here. And I mean that.
But let’s also be frank, because we don’t want to escape wisdom. I sure don’t know everything, so I don’t want to disregard the nuggets of wisdom that are good for me.
The expert advice you can disregard
I started ignoring these principles, and it paved the way to a little less stress.
There’s only one way to do things.
If you ever hear someone say that their way is the only way to success – turn tail and run. There are best practices to stand by, but the people who stand heads above and beyond are those who forge their own trail. You don’t have to break the rules, but you also don’t have to follow someone’s strategy like they are your god. No one can guarantee someone else’s success anyway. It’s up to the individual to show up every day and do the hard work.
You have to be on social media.
I believed this for a long time. Just about everyone says you have to be on social media these days, because that’s the way the world works. However, I really believe that if you truly don’t want to be on social media, you can find a way around it. Yes, it does make online business easier. And yes, social media is a great way to connect with other people. But I think some enterprising individuals can find a way around it. The ever-changing algorithms constantly affect our reach anyway. There’s no guarantee that you’ll be able to connect with your ideal reader, customer, etc., without a load of cash for advertising.
Everything has already been done, so don’t even bother.
Duh, of course everything’s been done. It’s the 21st century and billions of humans inhabit the earth. Nothing is new under the sun. If I had listened to people say that blogging is dead or there are enough books out in the world, than I would be sitting here binge watching Friends. You can find a way around this belief. People still start blogs, even though “experts” said blogging was dead back in 2011. I hadn’t even started Words on Paper yet. Trends change, the platform adjusts – I won’t deny that people ingest information different than they did five years ago. But if you want to open a shop on Etsy, or write a book, or publish an EP, than go for it. It’s going to be a lot of work, and you will have to adapt with a constantly changing market and find a way to set yourself apart. But it can happen.
Seek wisdom from people you trust
Maybe you trust them from the online world, but you can also find people in your own social circles. They may not run a website like you do, but they may know a thing or two about hard work, success, reaching other people. And they also know you. We don’t have to take every word from a YouTuber or the sponsored ads that cloud our Instagram feed. Wisdom comes from the real world, too.
Again, you may not know me. You don’t have to listen to a word I say. Isn’t that freeing?
And, also, I wanted to remind you that you can also try things without having to stick with them forever. Like, right now I spend a lot of time on Pinterest to drive traffic to my blog. I don’t have to do that forever, if something better were to work.
If what I said did help you, and I hope it did, you can access more resources every month in our inbox club. I’ll give you a free one right now if you want. Below you can access a worksheet that helps you figure out what you have to offer the world. This is work you do on your own, without my “expert advice” jabbering in your ear.