One of the personality traits I’m least proud of is my stubborn refusal to admit I’m wrong coupled with a reluctance to ask for help and an over-developed sense of pride. Unfortunately events over the past couple of weeks have shown that I’ve still a way to go in overcoming this unedifying combination.
The situation was thus. I was asked to participate in a Writing Process Blogging Tour the idea being that writer A writes a blog about what they write about and how, and then gets writers B, C and possibly D to follow suit.
We were asked a number of questions and it all seemed very straightforward and pleasant until I was asked how my writing differed from other blog writers. I gave this some thought and acknowledged that while many write blogs as a marketing tool, I on the other hand, do not.
According to my post, I ‘don’t want to be constrained by framing the blog in a certain way in order to attract clients’.
Well that’s all well and good and very worthy – obviously an artiste such as myself wouldn’t be bothered with something as mundane as touting for clients – so why but a mere two weeks later, was I enthusiastically and with, some might say, unseemly haste, signing up for a writing course entitled Blog For Clients run by the awesomely talented Corrina Gordon-Barnes.
In fact I wouldn’t be surprised if I wasn’t the very first to register.
The fact of the matter is that while I pride (eewww, that nasty word again) myself on writing a good blog and while I want to write in my own style and with my own message, I would indeed very much like my blog to attract more clients to my door. So why didn’t I say so?
I am, after all, the OUT LOUD coach and if you can’t rely on me to tell the truth, who can you rely on?
Well, say it very quietly – if I’d been really honest with you and indeed myself, then this would mean that I was doing something wrong and as I’ve already said, this is one of my all time pet hates (when I was a little girl my dad often used to say I always had to have the last word so as you can see this, like many deeply entrenched ways of behaving and thinking, has its roots way back in childhood).
AND though it pains me to admit it even more, I’ve been acutely aware of Corrina’s course for some time and been trying to pretend to myself that although it’s probably an excellent programme (for other people), I probably didn’t need it.
Now why would that be? Well the sorry truth is that I’ve been blogging for quite a while now, think I’m quite good at it (actually let’s be done with the lying, I think I’m really good) and so by signing up for this course, I’d basically be saying (in my skewed logic) that all the blogs I’ve already written are somehow worthless and not only that, but I’d also be conceding that I’d something to learn from someone else, that basically – oh, the indignity, I need help.
The only saving grace of this sad little tale is the fact that I’ve at least finally recognised one error of my ways and have now swallowed a sufficient amount of pride to admit that maybe I was a teensy bit wrong and a modicum of help from an expert might be well … helpful.
Another happy outcome of all this is the thought that I’m sure I’m not alone in wanting to look right and competent at all times and believe asking for assistance, is an admission of weakness.
OUT LOUDERS, I am here to tell you that it is indeed an admission of weakness – and all the better for it. (Actually, come to think of it, it’s also a sign of strength – think ‘fiercely independent’ and ‘determined’ for example).
The good news is that we humans are weak and it’s our weaknesses that make us delightfully human. And so do our strengths – so do every little bit of ourselves and when we acknowledge that OUT LOUD it not only sets us free, it also gives permission to others to embrace every little bit of themselves too and that’s got to be a good thing. Because then there’s no need to hide the bits and pieces of ourselves we’re ashamed of and we can all just get on with being who we really are, not some unconvincing, pretend version of ourselves.
Recognising that others have something to offer you even in an area where you consider yourself to be competent, doesn’t detract from your own worth. I of all people know how hard it is to give way when you’ve fenced yourself in to a very strong position – there’s loss of face, pride and all that icky stuff, yet the only person you’re hurting is yourself.
I’m ready to own that I’m a good writer AND I also accept I’ve loads to learn around making my OUT LOUD blog less of a creative expression and more of a learning resource for my readers and all the other people out there who could use a bit of my help.
I think I can do this AND the funny thing is I need YOUR HELP! (once you get started with this stuff…)
My course with Corrina officially starts on 19 May but I’m starting the learning right now.
What do you think? Have you learnt anything from this blog? And if you have, please tell me – as you may have guessed, my pride means that I’m also not very good at receiving honest feedback but in the interest of my own self development, I’ll practice staying with anything you choose to throw at me.
And also please share with us your own experiences of being attached to being right, where you deny yourself the opportunity to learn or indeed any other flaws you’re not particularly proud of. It’s such a relief to say them OUT LOUD and who knows, you might find what you consider a weakness is someone else’s strength.
You know I’m right.