Post image for Will The Real You Please Stand Up

Will The Real You Please Stand Up

As you know, as a solopreneur, people need to know, like and trust you before they will do business with you.  But do they really care who you are? And how far are you willing to go to let people get to know the real you?

Let’s tackle both those questions.

First of all, yes, people really do care who you are.  They don’t necessarily need to know all the intimate details of your life but they want to get a good sense of who you are and what you’re all about.

You don’t need to tell them what you ate for lunch, because frankly, no one cares. Here’s a tip for you.  Draw from things in your every day life and use them as teaching points. For instance, when I’m writing or speaking I often bring in examples of things I learn from my kids. That allows me to add value and also share a more personal side with people.

And as a leader in your niche, don’t you want to create a small sense of “celebrity”?  Look at the fascination we have with reality TV. Although, as you know, there isn’t much “reality” in reality TV. Which brings me to my next point. Don’t be fake. People will see right through that.

It’s about building community around your message and gifts. Know what you stand for in your business and in your life. That’s what developing your Core Message is all about. When you do that, and share honestly and from the heart, the right people will gather around you and be inspired by you. Don’t be afraid to step up. When you hold back your gifts and your message, you are doing people a disservice.

The second question is equally intriguing.Ask yourself honestly, how far are you willing to go to let people into your world? Are you willing to share your fears, dreams and vulnerabilities? Just how raw are you going to get?

The truth is that when you get real with people, they will connect with you emotionally. They will appreciate you trusting in them enough to be honest.

Will some people judge you? Absolutely. But you have to trust in yourself enough to ignore that. Heck, some people won’t like you just because of the way you look or talk. To be honest, I’ve come across some brilliant people and couldn’t get into them because of the pitch of their voice. Shallow maybe, but it’s true.

So stop worrying about what other people will think about you. The right people will be attracted to you – quirks and all.

Develop relationships with people out of sincerity and authenticity. Don’t worry about where the relationship will lead you. Just get to know people and let them get to know you.

Just do me one favor. Don’t pretend that you’re being real when you’re not. Don’t get so rehearsed in sharing your vulnerabilities that it becomes a game. Don’t do it because you think it will attract people to you, but because you genuinely want to help people by sharing your truth.

What have your experiences been in sharing the real you and in seeing other leaders do the same? Please share your comments and feedback below. Thanks!

 

{ 15 comments… read them below or add one }

Libby Kalis

Hi Cindy,

Both in business and life, I have found that honesty really is the best policy. Those people who are not genuine, may fool some people, but not for long – and their credibility will never recover.

I have shared my story about living with depression – the good and bad – and people appreciate my honesty and “putting myself out there.”

The leaders that I admire the most are the ones who admit to their mistakes when they make them, and are not affraid to share them publicly.

Kindest.
Libby

Reply

Cindy

Hi Libby,
What you share through your work is incredibly honest and I can only imagine how much people appreciate what you share. Just knowing that they’re not alone with their depression must be a huge comfort, and knowing that you actually have solutions that can help them is truly a blessing.
warm wishes,
Cindy

Reply

Rob

Cindy – I’ve shared stories of my early (and more recent) struggles with marketing and it has been helpful to readers, I think, to see that this stuff is not rocket science and that even if you’re not a natural and struggle early on you can make it work.

I’ve also used stories – for example how my wife helped me to get motivated when I was struggling – and many people have said how they found this really resonated with them.

But I have to admit, as you mentioned about the pretending, that I’ve seen some marketers who continually seem to be on video with their family that they’re really just doing it for effect. It’s like they’ve calculated that being “genuine” will help them sell more, so they plan out how to be genuine.

It sets my teeth on edge.

Reply

Cindy

Exactly Rob – sharing stories of our struggles can be a huge inspiration to people. And it’s also true that if we can show people how we overcame our challenges, and even create systems or solutions for overcoming them, that is huge!

We need to learn to craft our story and share it in a genuine way. Can everyone do that? Absolutely! Do some people shy away from it because of fear of looking weak or fear of revealing too much? I believe so. Do some people overdo it? I think so as well.

We each need to find the level of “rawness” that we’re comfortable with. It doesn’t happen all at once. It can take time to get comfortable with it. Just don’t force it or “over-calculate” it (love that word Rob – thanks:).

Reply

Arleen Bradley

Hi Cindy;
I like what you have to say. I find that I learn the most when the speaker gives examples from their own life. Somehow it seems to resonate with me when I hear their story. This is something I will have to remember for my own talks.

Thanks for sharing this information and bringing it to light.

Reply

Cindy

Thanks Arleen. Stories are very powerful because they’re intriguing, relatable and easy to follow. You can share stories from your own life and stories that highlight your clients. I appreciate you Arleen!

Reply

Morris

The truth always sets you free. So if your are truthful with your self then you can be the person you really are. Truth is an emotion and it will get a response. We have shared lots and it has taught me a lot about myself.

Reply

Cindy

HI Morris – I can always count on you to be truthful and forthcoming. I really appreciate that about you.

Reply

Tricia

Hello!

I believe in honesty and truth, and use both as far as is possible. As a Registered Massage Therapist, I frequently encounter people with chronic muscle and joint problems that just won’t go away. Unfortunately, the language barrier prevents me from empathizing freely, but I relate as best I can. If necessary, I mention that I have similar problems and experiences. This seems to hearten them, though it’s hard to be certain because I happen to be totally blind and cannot see facial expressions or body language. In general, I am able to give moral support to people who are going through tough times. I cannot say just how I’m able to connect with such folk, but I believe it’s because one of my core values is helping others. I want to help people where possible even though I cannot see and do not hear well. I have a natural empathy toward people with physical disabilities.

Reply

Cindy

Wow – this is really powerful stuff Tricia. Thank you for sharing. I think a lot can be expressed through each of our senses, including touch. And no matter what the limitations we each have, we can find a way to express our heart, which you clearly do. Thank you Tricia!

Reply

Dolly

Thank you Cindy for regularly writing useful contents. It used to be a challenge for me to share openly. After many years of gradually doing so in talks and workshops I deliver to schools and organisations about parent coaching, I was able to open my heart and connect deeply. As a result, I help parents to open up and share from their heart. This process help me to release my emotional baggage and theirs as well. No one has to pretend that everything is OK, when we need help. Taking off the social masks is liberating. I call that self-expression and that is how parents could relate and resonate with my personal stories as well. Hope to see you in Singapore one day.

Reply

Cindy

Hi Dolly,
It’s great to hear from you! You raise some valuable points. It’s not just about sharing from the heart in business, but in life as well. When we do that, we can get the help we need, help others, and make meaningful connections with people. Thank you for sharing your words of wisdom Dolly.
warm wishes,
Cindy

Reply

Michelle

This is a lesson I keep learning.

One layer at a time I’m sharing more and being more vulnerable with my readers. I’m becoming okay with some people judging me for that, because it allows other to embrace me and identify with me in a completely different way.

It’s worth the challenge to be real and raw and honest about the messiness that is building an entrepreneurial business and living life.
Michelle´s last blog post ..Learning to Be Gentle

Reply

Cindy

Thanks for sharing that Michelle.

We’re all on this incredible journey as entrepreneurs and we all have different goals, accomplishments and frustrations. If I can share how I’ve struggled and how I’ve overcome some of those challenges, and in so doing, inspire and help others, then I’m all in on that.

By the way, I only met you briefly but even in that quick time together, I could see how genuine you are as a person. You’ve translated that so beautifully online!
warm wishes,
Cindy

Reply

Michelle

It was wonderful to meet you Cindy, and thank you. :) I hope our paths cross (for longer, next time!) in the future.
Michelle´s last blog post ..Learning to Be Gentle

Reply

Leave a Comment

CommentLuv badge

Previous post:

Next post:


Website engineering by Tony Jennings, Cambridge, England.www.tony-jennings.com