communtity

She is not your competition

By Taylor Bryant

As brand strategist and a newly minted entrepreneur, I spent a lot of time thinking about competition. And all of that thinking made me afraid. I was scared that having a business that was similar to someone else would make me less of an entrepreneur. I feared failing. If I’m being honest, I was afraid to even say hello to owners of businesses similar to mine. It’s all too easy to see everything as a me versus them situation when you use the word competition. The very word implies that there is a winner and a loser. And in the world of blogging and creative entrepreneurship, that is not the case.

This is the story of how I figured that truth out for myself. Quotes carry a lot of meaning for me. I’m always underlining, doodling, and pinning words that speak truth. These words by Zen Shin cut to the heart of my thoughts surrounding competition, “A flower does not think of competing to the flower next to it. It just blooms.”

Success isn’t about beating competition, rather it depends on self-understanding and self-improvement. All of the effort expended on being better than another person is better spent by investing in yourself and in others.

Every day, I fight fear and envy and the voice that tells me that I’m not good enough and remind myself of this truth: she (or he) is not your competition. I’m just beginning to learn that lesson, and maybe it’s something that you need to hear too. That mindset shift takes time. I often whisper to myself, “Just bloom” because I get caught up in the idea of competition.

These are a few actions that have helped me bloom. Incorporating one or two of these ideas into your blog or business might be just what you need to kick your competitive mindset to the curb.

Connect

Instead of avoiding people in your niche, connect with them. Set up a time to chat over coffee, by phone, or through video conferencing. The people that you may have previously considered to be competition are in actuality the people who will best understand your struggles. You are perfectly positioned to offer mutual support, encouragement, and advice. Your “competition” is a resource, not an enemy.

Collaborate

Join forces with others in your field for a collaboration. Write a joint blog post series. Co-host a podcast. Create an e-course together.

I could keep listing potential collaboration opportunities. Even though your businesses overlap, you likely have different customer bases. You probably also have different strengths and work processes. Collaborating creates a win-win situation for all involved while competition only allows for a winner and a loser.

Celebrate

Focus on what you do well and let that be the center of your business. Emulating someone else will leave you exhausted and self-critical. Invest in your strengths. You’ll be amazed at how much more joy you have.

Curate

Get really clear on what you do and don’t do. Curate your service list. If a potential client asks for something outside of your comfort zone, refer them to someone else in your niche. You’ll be happier. You’ll be helping yourself and others bloom. And I bet people will return the favour.

Remember, friend: they are not your competition. When the going gets tough, tell yourself, “Just bloom.”

Taylor Bryant is the owner of Jubilant, a brand strategy firm for creative entrepreneurs. On any given day, you can find her practicing Pilates, drinking a cup of hot tea, and helping her clients create brands worth celebrating. Instagram is her social media of choice, so be sure to say hello @wearejubilant

Photo Credit: Unsplash

Personal Blogging: Is Sharing Really Caring?

By Lisa Jane Humphries 

In the beautiful, brave new world of personal blogging, you tend to tread the delicate line between thoughtful, authentic sharing and the dreaded narcissism. It was the rise of the so called ‘Mummy Blogger’ who dared venture into the very real and sometimes deeply personal places that others were too afraid to share. Beyond the highlight reel though lies the reality of routine, non filtered mess and the intimate struggles of every day people dealing with the dark taboo topics such as depression and anxiety. 

The concept of vulnerability comes to mind when you reflect on blogging from the heart. Although as bloggers we are often protected by our positions behind the screen of our technology, if we are sharing openly and honestly then we are instantly more vulnerable.

Brene Brown explores vulnerability in a way that shifts the focus from a place of weakness to actually being where you can potentially discover your greatness, which I love and highly recommend! Brene says: “Vulnerability is the birthplace of innovation, creativity and change.”

If you are able to share with the guiding principles of dignity, respect and grace then your sharing can possibly become the exact ray of light that someone else out in the vastness of the web is searching for. Since choosing to share in this way I have been contacted regularly by email, comments on my blog and social media by the recipients of my light, most often they reach out to me with gratitude, and usually always tears. These connections are the reason I share, and they are my sign that I am doing the right thing.

The blogosphere is filled with so many beautiful souls embracing their own vulnerabilities through their sharing. Some of the bloggers I find myself most drawn to are those who approach their writing in a very raw, authentic and kind way.

Rach at In Spaces Between
Rach is gentle, deeply wise and always honest. She has a clear vision to coach like-minded souls to realise their greatest dreams through blogging and creative business. At times Rach shares the reasons why she has not posted on her blog for an extended period, self care and compassion guide her every move and it is obvious that she is impacting so many lives.

Chantelle at Fat Mum Slim
Chantelle is a Mum who makes it clear that her family comes first. Sadly, her huge following sometimes means that Chantelle is subjected to bullying. I love the way that Chantelle shares the good and the bad, at times you can actually feel how shocked and disappointed she is when someone attacks her for no good reason. This vulnerability, honesty and determination to rise above despite the ‘haters’ is so inspiring!

Susannah Conway
My blogging and vulnerability hero! Susannah began blogging after the love of her life was taken tragically by a sudden heart attack. Susannah has written some of the most deeply personal books as well as her achingly beautiful blog and photography. I am in awe of her ability to uplift others and continue to work through her own grief so publicly and gently.

Do you embrace your vulnerability?

You can find Lisa blogging at Art of Joy or on Facebook - say hello!

#blogtribe // Have You Outgrown Your Blog?

outgrowing-your-blog

One of my favourite blog trends from the past few years happens to be a series of posts from bloggers worldwide entitled 'what would you tell your 25 year-old self.'  I first read about the movement here and actually wrote my own personal post here complete with tips and advice for my younger self. Oh the benefit of hindsight is truly something wonderful isn't it?

As individuals (and bloggers) the simple truth is that we grow up, change and evolve.  Not only do we leave behind the younger version of ourselves, but as bloggers we sometimes leave behind or outgrow the very blogs that have pushed us to where we are today.  I've had this conversation with a few blogging pals lately which got me thinking about reinvention and how to move forward when your blog no longer represents the person you are today.  

My own personal blog (long overdue for a redesign) is still relevant as it's a haven for my own personal journey however what about when you completely change direction or for example your travel blog has shifted in a new DIY direction?  How do you remain true to yourself and your loyal readers? Is it possible to reinvent yourself in the blogging world without a rebrand?

I'm here today not with all the answers but to pose the question to my #blogtribe, many of whom I know are going through this exact transition. Personally I believe in order to tell stories that truly connect you have to blog from the heart and for me, this means writing from a place that feels authentic and true. But I don't pretend to have all the answers and so I leave the question to you today and hope you can share your thoughts and advice on what happened when you outgrew your blog?

Looking to find your tribe? Get involved with this week's #blogtribe movement:

HOW TO GET INVOLVED IN #BLOGTRIBE

  1. Each week, take part in #blogtribe Tuesday by uploading on either InstagramFacebook or Twitter (or all three!) an image of a blogger or blog that inspires you, that you want to support or that you feel deserves a bit of attention. Go on, make a blogger's day!
  2. Always use the hashtag #blogtribe and tag @blogsociety so your images can be shared in our weekly wrap-up as well as shared with bloggers around the world.
  3. This celebration is all about having fun, if you miss a day, don’t worry simply post when inspiration strikes!
  4. Check back often and follow the #blogtribe hashtag feed each week to seek, discover and connect with new blogs and bloggers.

Know a blogger that might like to get involved? Make sure to spread the word about #blogtribe. or sign up here to join our community.