Rebel Rising Podcast

“What if they think it’s stupid?” How to Stop Doubting and Start Sharing Your Work

Typos. Typos are the bane of my existence.

I can't tell you how many times I've sent out an email newsletter and it's had a typo in it, but there was one time that a typo almost did my whole business in.

So once upon a time when LinkedIn articles were the new big thing, I decided that I would take one of the blog posts I had written and post it on LinkedIn, slap a picture on it and push publish.

Then something remarkable happened with that LinkedIn article in about 24 hours– It got 46,000 views on Linkedin, and this is the stuff you dream about when you're thinking about going viral.

Thousands of views, new followers, new opt-ins, and there were a lot of positive comments about the article, so I was feeling pretty good about it. I liked the article, I liked that it was getting traction and it was great to meet so many new people.

However, a week later I got an envelope in the mail and the envelope was a printed out version of my LinkedIn article where it marked every typo or “grammatical error.”

For blog posts, I write the way I talk and that's not necessarily grammatically correct. 

This person took the time to go through with a red pen, like my 11th grade English teacher would use, and mark up every single error.

Then took the time to track down my physical mailing address and then go to the post office and send it to me first. This was so creepy. I couldn't even begin to tell you. I

felt like this person was probably going to stalk me, but thankfully the return mark on the envelope said it was from across the country.

This caused me to have huge doubts.

I felt like I was stupid because of the typos. It made me doubt my own value and made me doubt the value of what I had to say. It made me doubt my own work and I withdrew for a while.

I went and hid in my shell and sure that article had thousands of shares and a hundred nice comments.

But I doubted because somebody called me out on a typo and it planted the seed in my head. It's like, what if they think this is stupid? What if I'm not perfect enough?

But here's the thing, what you have to say, what I have to say, it's not stupid and our work is never going to be perfect.

To get our work into the world and share our message, we've got to stop worrying about what other people may or may not think.

And part of my mission on this planet is yes, to have you get your own 3 Word Rebellion to spread and to spread that to spread your message and grow your business, but I also think I need to help you prepare for having that kind of message that is bigger than you, bigger than your business, and catches on.

And that's what we are going to do on today's show. I'm going to give you some practical insights and suggestions to navigating the doubt that you might feel as you start putting your work into the world and to go boldly and share that message.

Tune into the audio:

But before we do, I'm starting a new segment of the show where I give some love back to you, the listeners, and give you a shout out. So, Porsche Race Girl left me a five-star review on iTunes and said real and honest messaging.

I found Michelle as a guest on another show and immediately loved her honesty. I was obsessed. I subscribed to her podcast right away. She brings a wealth of valuable information to share with her audience and is no BS, she is in this to help others become the best they can be. Love me some Michelle and a rebel rising. Thank you Michelle for all you do.

Thank you Porsche Race Girl for leaving me such a fantastic review of the podcast as a podcast or you know, I have no idea how my work is being received and reviews just mean so much to me.

Because right now I'm sitting alone talking to myself into a microphone and it is nice to be reminded that my words and this show have an impact. So if you have something to say about this podcast, please leave me a review on iTunes. And who knows you might be getting some listener love on a future episode. So let's get on with the show.

Some real talk here. Do you know how hard it was for me to read that review to you all?

Like how very difficult it was to read a review that said nice things about me and nice things about this show? It was super hard because the little grumbling in my head is screaming right now.

She's saying, oh, Porsche Race Girl, she's just being nice. You're not all that great, Michelle, Duh. Don't listen to her. So the first insight I have for you on how to stop doubting yourself and start sharing your message is simply this:

Believe people, accept compliments and read what people write about you and let that in, receive it, let it land.

And I have not been very good at letting compliments and praise land. And I'll never forget on the day that Aretha Franklin died, I was having a conversation with my coach and friend of the pod, Tanya Geisler, who was recently on to talk about unshakable confidence.

Tanya brought up a compliment that someone left on one of my Instagram posts and she read it to me and she's like, what do you think? And I said, oh, that's cool. Where did you see that? And she was said, it's on your Instagram. And you actually replied to it.

See, the fact is at that moment I had a really hard time receiving compliments. They would literally just bounce off of me like a rubber ball. Like it was unreal. But the problem with that was that when I wasn't receiving those compliments, it really showed that I wasn't showing respect and reverence for my work and Aretha Franklin was all about respect.

When people say nice things about you and your work, the best way to stop doubting yourself is to start believing them. 

My action step for you here is to read your reviews of your podcast, of your book. Look through your client testimonials and believe what they say.

Those people are not just being nice. They are not just, you know, trying to build up your ego. They are letting you know how amazing your work is, so receive it. I know it's going to feel weird to do, but let that praise and those compliments in any way.

It is a powerful way to stop doubting your work is by accepting the praise and compliments of other people. It shows your work, the respect that it deserves.

Now, this second idea I have for you about facing the doubts that you're stupid, that you're not enough, we're not worthy, is something simple

Face your doubts by writing it out.

Whenever I'm in a big funk, like I'm doubting my capacity, my ability, the first thing I do is a brain dump of thoughts, I just grab my notebook and I write down everything that my squirrelly brain is telling me about. And Stacy Fisher who was on the podcast and who is a client of mine, her 3 Word Rebellion is Create How You Feel.

In her interview, we talked about doing these thought downloads so that we can get our doubts and our negative self-talk on to paper where we can actually deal with them.

And then once I can see what my brain is telling me, I can start questioning it. Using Byron Katie's The Way, is this actually true? How can I know it's true? Is this just a story that I'm telling myself?

When I am facing those doubts, the best thing that I can do is get those thoughts out of my head and onto paper because then they can stop taking up all of the space and I can actually deal with them.

Whenever you find yourself doubting, what I want you to do, your action here is to get it out of your head and on to paper.

Now the final insight I want to leave you with is something that I have struggled with and still struggle with for years.

Because if we are going to share our message, we have to wave goodbye to perfectionism.

Now let's take my example of typos. If you email me about a typo, which I totally don't mind if you do, but you should know the conversation that I'm having in my head that really has nothing to do with you.

So the situation is the email comes in, oh, you've made a typo.

In my head, this script starts playing this recording. Oh my God, I can't believe I did that. I can't believe I made a typo. I suck. I should have better attention to detail. I have a Ph.D. I shouldn't be making rookie mistakes like that. People aren't going to think well of me. They're going to think that my work sucks and that I'm stupid and oh my gosh!

I'm going to stop myself right there because that is the Perfectionism Gremlin. Oh my gosh, total Perfectionism Gremlin, that everything must be absolutely 100% perfect or it's crap and it's not true.

Whatever it is that you're working on, you could spend weeks, months, years, getting it to be perfectly polished in every way, but it's not going to make the product that much better.

It's better to send things out in the world with a few imperfections and let the chips fall where they may– you're human.

You and I both make mistakes, so my new mantra around perfection is striving to be imperfectly polished.

It might not be perfect. It might have a typo or two and that's okay.

The other thing that I have been playing with, and this is a very daring, bold move, is a little bit of exposure therapy.

Seriously, whatever your obsessing about or trying to perfect. I want you to intentionally make a mistake and hit publish anyway.

For me, what that looks like is sometimes I intentionally put a typo in an email that I'm sending to my entire community because it gets me used to making mistakes.

Give that a try, expose yourself to the imperfection and just let it go because to step into a big message that changes people, our industry and the world, we've got to move with the doubt and take action.

We've got to stop caring about what we think other people might be thinking and put our message into the world.

So if you're ready to create that big bold message, the best place you can do that is to start with the 3 Word Rebellion book. The first few chapters are really preparing you to step up into leadership to spread that message, and, of course, DM me on Instagram and let me know what's the one action you're going to take from today's episode.

Are you going to be daring and try some of that exposure therapy? Are you going to do a thought download and get all of your ideas out of your head and onto paper? Or are you just going to start excepting complements and letting them land?

What you have to say is worthwhile and your message, your 3 Word Rebellion, needs to be heard.

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