You read that right. We're about to talk about why discomfort is a sign you're doing things RIGHT when it comes to building your personal brand. And more specifically, the 3 different kinds of discomfort you're guaranteed to experience along your way (and why they're so crucial to your mission and helping you grow!)
If you've been listening for a while, you've already heard about some of the ways I've had to get uncomfortable while establishing myself, pivoting my business and starting to scale. But I'm going even deeper today into where the most painful stuff has come from and how I was able to use it to move me forward -- so hopefully you can too!
MENTIONED IN THIS EPISODE
Jim Fortin ▷ https://www.jimfortin.com/
Selina Gray ▷ https://selinagray.com/
My episode on owning your story
⚡️ FREE PERSONAL BRANDING QUIZ: WHAT'S YOUR EXPERT STATUS?
CONNECT WITH ME
You're listening to Episode 25. If building your brand is comfortable, you're not doing it right. Yes, it's time for a tough love episode where I'm going to dive into the three different kinds of discomfort that are essential to the growth of your personal brand and business. Let's do this. Welcome to the personal branding project. I'm your host Kat Elizabeth, an actor and personal branding coach who is obsessed with helping creative entrepreneurs like you build personal brands that change your life for good from attracting bigger opportunities, more joy and freedom in your life, and the ability to get paid to do the things that you love most. Each week, I'm bringing you inspiration, practical advice and the occasional dose of tough love. So you can stop dreaming and start doing what it takes to make those dreams a reality. So with a title like this, it's only fitting that I'm recording this episode. In this comfort, Why you ask? Well, I will tell you in a second, but first I need to give you a very special announcement. So I you may already know this, but in case you don't, I have a brand new free masterclass coming out next week and I would love to invite you. It is called How to Become the go to expert in your niche without working to the point of burnout. So, obviously, we're talking about building a brand every single week, or I was gonna say every single week. It's been three months since my last episode, but I'm assuming if you're listening to this right now, that is what you want to do. You want to become the go to expert in your niche, which means needing to attract a whole bunch of superfans and to really establish yourself as that go to authority in your space. However, one of the problems that we tend to sort of get caught in when we are doing this is we start hustling really Hard working crazy hours trying to implement every damn strategy in the book, it can get really overwhelming and exhausting. I have definitely been on that end of things. In fact, I feel like I'm still coming out of it. Because I'm, I'm an ever student, forever student. I'm always trying to upskill and try all of the things because I love being my own guinea pig like I love trying everything out for you, so that I can report back but that can also mean that I get sucked into that rabbit hole of doing too many things. So I am working on that for myself. And I am going to be helping you with that in this masterclass. So I'll give you a quick summary. So we're going to be talking about how you can avoid the three big mistakes that are keeping you invisible, overwhelmed and feeling burned out in your business. You're going to learn how to create a magnetic personal brand so that you can attract your dream clients who pay you for your expertise and we are going to break down my indemand brand blueprint So that you can really pull this whole thing together and understand what you're actually aiming for and what it takes to build that brand without burning yourself out. So I would love it if you can join me if you haven't already registered, go to personal branding project and co slash expert I will obviously keep the link in the show notes as well. I am going to be teaching these master classes live next week so on the 16th and 17th of September, but if you're listening to this in the future, you will be able to register and watch the replay so don't stress if you are in the future right now. Hi a future friend. You can still catch it. Okay, so I hope to see you there but now I just let's get straight into this episode. Okay, so I told you that I was feeling uncomfortable. And it's not actually because I went back to the gym today for the first time in let's just say a while it's been a while. I never really found my my groove in Vancouver. So for two years I kind of didn't really consistently go and then obviously COVID happened and that was just a really easy excuse to stop me from going. By the way I'm, I'm back in Australia right now. I, I forgot to mention that. So that's, that's another reason. It's been a really long time since I've actually been posting and publishing podcasts. But I am back in Australia for a while. And it's been a bit of an epic journey to get back here with everything that was going on. But I am very excited to be back in the Gold Coast, which is sort of my hometown. Now I'm going on a tangent, but I'm just Yeah, I just wanted to let you know where I am. Hi. So for all my Ozzy listeners. I'm back in back in the hood. But anyways, we're talking about discomfort. I did injure myself today, but that's not the discomfort I'm talking about. I started to get into my own head about being on the podcast. I I definitely went through a phase and I think a lot of us have you know, because All everything that was going on in the world and we were really needing to quiet the voices that were not speaking to some of the really, you know, prevalent issues that we needed to talk about I, you know, I happily kind of took a step back, been doing my own work behind the scenes and not not posting and not publishing and that felt felt right for a while. And then at one stage, it kind of went from being intentional to then it just becoming me a little bit scared about getting back into it for some strange reason. Like, I feel like I lost my nerve. And I have to say, thank you. I've had a few different listeners reach out in the last week, especially with some really amazing feedback, saying what a difference this podcast is made and, guys, girls, friends, I needed to hear that. So thank you because it just reminded me that what I'm doing is not for nothing because it can feel that way sometimes. And so basically, I've wanted to do an entire episode on this discomfort because building a brand, building a personal brand is very uncomfortable. And if it doesn't feel that way, you're probably not doing it right. Yes, I just said the title again, but I'm just trying to drill that in. So today I want to actually break down three specific kinds of discomfort. It's obviously not an exhaustive list. Because life is uncomfortable. Building a business is uncomfortable. But there are some things that are very specific to building a personal brand where you are the face of your brand that are extra uncomfortable. I mean, I had to go through it when I was launching this podcast in the first place. And now I'm going through it again, because I'm kind of relaunching it after such a long break. I'm launching this this masterclass coming up and I'm sharing it with an audience but then it's kind of getting shared further than it normally does. And I've got all these new people coming into my circle and with that comes more discomfort. There's all these things so that's what we're unpacking today. It's a little bit different to the usual but I hope you like it - let me know. If you do enjoy this episode, just screenshot it, share it on Instagram and tag me @iamkatelizabeth - I always reshare and just let me know what you thought of it and what you got out of it. And by the way, if you've been listening for a while and you're getting a lot out of this podcast, I would be so grateful if you would leave it a review. My poor little podcast has been slipping back down the ranks becoming invisible again because I've not been posting regularly and your reviews actually make a huge difference. Because it just gets the word out and it shows apple and whatever other platforms that I'm doing a good job and that it's worth listening to. So just know that even you know, if it takes you 60 seconds it's like actually priceless what you do. So anyways, let's get into it. So I want to talk about the irony of the fact that we we are actually on this mission to build a personal brand because we want to be more comfortable. Well, at least that's how I sseeay it. We want to create a life that's more comfortable. Because we want more freedom. We want freedom to do what we want to do to get paid to do the things that we love, to have the freedom to pivot and evolve and change and move like physically as well. And then, really, the actual journey is anything but comfortable. And so we're going to talk about three different -- I'm just going to go straight into the first point that I have. So I want to talk about the discomfort of being seen and heard. Oh, boy. So I think I think some people set out on this journey and think that they can somehow keep hiding, even while putting themselves out there. It I know it doesn't really make that much sense. But like I see people with a personal brand still hiding. I'm not seeing their face. I'm not seeing them share their story. I'm not seeing them get uncomfortable in any way - they're completely hidden, and not just hidden because they're hiding, but they're, they're invisible. Because you know, when you are trying to hide that much from the world, it's really hard for people to actually even discover you. So it's gonna be really difficult to grow your business. And I get how scary it is, it can be really scary to put a face out there with your name. You know, because if you have been in more of a corporate environment, or you've been working a day job for a very long time, and you feel like oh, I'm just another number, but that's fine. I'm just gonna, like, put my uniform on and hide in the back and it's all good. Like, I don't have to take full responsibility. I don't have to make too many decisions. Like, I can just go home at the end of the day. And that's it. I mean, I know it's not like that for old jobs, but there is just a very different mentality where it's like someone else's face is out front and part of you is like I'm good with that. But then probably the reason you're on this journey now is part of you wasn't okay with that. But if you wanted to finally be seen and be heard and have something of your own, you know, something that you can put your stamp on that you can grow from start to finish. And trust me, if that's if you haven't done that yet, but you're on that mission, let me tell you, it feels so good. It's not easy. It's not comfortable, but it really, it's worth it. But in the process, you actually have to put yourself out there, my friend, yes, you can build a business brand, a company brand where it's not your face, and you can kind of create a persona for it and all of that, but it's a totally different thing. And usually those ones are going to be either like a brick and mortar business because it's just that's kind of how you can work that it's it's cool if it's not a personal brand, or it's a bigger company and you've got a budget to like hire people and have your marketing team and create this whole persona for your brand. Like if you're a solopreneur, those aren't generally the options. So, the fact is it needs to be you that is out there. And I talked about being seen and heard. So when I say heard, I mean you actually having a voice, so not just kind of like sharing other people's quotes, you know, sharing some very generic advice. I mean, not even generic, but just like safe content, you know, the, the list posts and the simple how tos and like, don't get me wrong, there is a time and place for that, that helpful kind of content. But your brand really starts to take off when you share the stuff that's uncomfortable to share, your your story, your backstory, your struggles, your values, the things that you really care about your opinions. People are so scared of having opinions because if you have an opinion, it probably means that some people are going to disagree with you. And yes, they will, but they're not your people. So it's actually okay. It's taken me a long time to come around to that, because I'm such a people pleaser, and very sensitive, very easily offended because I just I take things personally. But I realized that if I can, I can speak out and speak my truth as cheesy as that sounds, it gets easier to attract to the people who are meant to work with me and actually repel the people who aren't. And that's good thing because I don't want to work with those people who aren't the right fit for me. But it's very easy to have people start to work with you. I mean, I say easy. If you attract them into your circle at all, and they're the wrong people. You can just as easily have them like sign a contract or sign up for your thing and then be like, Oh, this isn't what I wanted. But they they couldn't know that until they started and then they got to know you better or you know, they worked with your you know, your service. So your product and this is why we need to actually share some of what means something to Before they work with us so that they can actually sort of decide they can they can self select, you know, they can go Yep. For me or no, not for me. But that sharing part can be really scary. One of the biggest things that people come to me with like the most common things that people come to me with asking for help with is how the hell do I share my own story? Without like crossing a line? Like how much is too much? How do I go from not sharing it to suddenly sharing it like all of these things, it's it can get very overwhelming and get very up in your head about it. And I'm not saying that I have a quick fix, you know, or a magic pill for that or anything. For me, it just took time. Honestly, I mean, I have all sorts of training like come join my free Facebook group if you want. I did do a I have done some training in there on, you know, your backstory and sharing things. There's other episodes of this podcast where I talk about that too. But once you actually Know what you want to share at least you have a vague idea of what the strategy will be. The next step is actually sharing it, and you're not going to be great at it when you first start, at least Probably not. You know, even if you're a natural storyteller, when you're sharing your own story, when you're sharing something that's close to you, it is it's terrifying. Because you're like, oh my goodness, like what are people gonna think when they know this? Like, are they gonna judge me all the things all the stories will come out all the Gremlins. So between putting your face out there and adding your story and those things that you care about... That stuff is going to be uncomfortable. Okay, long story short, but it can't be skipped. If you want to build a personal brand you need to be seen and you need to be heard and not in a fake way not in a you know, using someone else's like Madlib templates that help you write emails and posts like it needs to be your words. And so I would just say to you right now, like if that if that terrifies you just just our own, own the terror and do it anyway. Because it does actually get easier you get way better at doing it and it's like they say like your comfort zone is like, outside of your comfort zone is outside because like that's just where it's been this whole time. As soon as you start doing the thing that's outside your comfort zone, your comfort zone expands, you know, so there's again there's no quick fix, it's just do the thing and it gets easier. So that is being seen and heard, the discomfortof it. Now let's talk about the discomfort of making mistakes. Oh, my goodness. I'm sure if you've been listening to this for a while or you've watched any of my videos, you know that I am very transparent about all of the mistakes that I've made. Although there's still a million more that I haven't haven't shared with you yet. Let me know if you did if you'd like me to share more, I'm happy to. Because believe it or not, the sharing about the mistakes is not the painful part. Unfortunately, the discomfort comes from the making of the mistakes. I don't really need to explain why. You know why. But here's why you actually need to make them. We learn from the mistakes, we do not learn anything from success. Like even if you're looking back over a successful launch and you like I'm going to use the launching as an example because it's very much about data. If you look through the the data of a launch, you're going to be looking at the numbers and you're going to be looking at like, Okay, so how did this convert and what happened here and blah, blah, blah, you're not looking for like what did really well, you're looking for what didn't do as well and where you can improve and that like you looking for the stuff that didn't work as well, is how you then create a roadmap of what to do next, you go in and make those changes make those tweaks and you improve. I have, many times, talked about my horrible flop of the launch from my previous business and what came out of it. Oh my goodness, I learned as - I really feel like that failed launch was the equivalent of a university degree for me, because of the number of things that I got out of it, learning about launches, learning about, you know, branding and positioning, learning about mental health and looking after myself and my business, learning about the niche that I was in and that I didn't want to be in it. So I was able to then, you know, move into another niche like, it was so valuable. And you know, what would have happened if I had succeeded at that launch? If I hit my my financial targets? I wouldn't have changed a thing. I would have stayed in the business that I'd created that did not light me up. That was the wrong fit for me. That was just like, so off track. I wouldn't have changed anything about my strategies. Like even though the launch nearly killed me. If it had brought in enough money. I would have been like, well, I guess that's just how it has to be, but because it nearly killed me and I had a terrible result. It was like, okay, things need to change. So, making mistakes, obviously it hurts, it can be frustrating. It can be humiliating. And sometimes it makes you want to give up because you're like, I must be just a failure. Like, I must just suck at this. But if you can become the person who sees mistakes as just education for yourself, incredible, priceless training, you are going to succeed. And it's you know, and I'm okay, so those are some big examples. But even talking smaller -- sending an email, I'm getting a lower open rate than usual. Okay, I sent an email the other day and I was just trying something different. I tried a subject line. I'm not sure I was super sold on it. I was like, let's just give this a go kinda half heartedly. And the open rates were like half of what I usually get, and I could have been like, oh, gosh, I just failed at that email instead I looked at and I was like, interesting. Okay, that that subject line didn't resonate with my audience, cool, noted moving on, you know, and that is that is so powerful, like, courses can't actually teach you that stuff. It's so funny. Okay, I'm going off on a tangent. But when I was sort of like, pulling together my, my mission, I guess, and really thinking about like, what is why do I do what I do? What's my mission to help my audience and this is like, earlier on in this journey, you know, I guess it's probably closer to you know, 12 months ago when I was just like, starting this podcast and things my mission in my head, I was like, I want to help you avoid all of the mistakes that I made. Like I made the mistakes so that you don't have to, and that in theory, it sounds great. And it kind of it sounds like it's I feel like it could be very appealing to a potential client to be like "sweet save me from making all the mistakes". And it was only quite recently that I was like, waaait, that is not my mission. Because I had like I I'm as I hate saying this, I'm as good as I am at what I do, because of the number of mistakes that I've made. So I would be doing a disservice to you, if I tried to stop you from making mistakes. So no, now I understand that my mission is to help you show up and do the thing that scares you and do it imperfectly. Because that is the key to you actually achieving your goals and putting yourself out there. But then giving you the tools and the resources to learn from those mistakes, learn from the things that don't work, and then be able to like to help you make adjust, like adjust course, and, you know, do it better the next time and then the next time and the next time to like really understand the data to to understand why something didn't work and and really sort of like break it down. In a more scientific way, so removing all the emotion from it and being like, Oh my gosh, I failed, but just go cool. Okay, so what do we learn from this great? What's the plan of attack? How do we move forward? So that's a pretty big change. I'm actually really proud of myself for that epiphany. I have to give some credit to my dad. It was during a wonderful conversation with him that I figured that out. But yes, so long story short, again, I'm always saying long story short, I tell a lot of long stories don't I hope you're still bearing with me. These mistakes are the best thing you could possibly do. And so if I've one piece of advice for you, it's like speed up the right of mistake making. I don't want to say speed up your rate of failure because again, like failure for me like it's you do something you make a mistake and then you never try it again, you give up that is failure, failure is just giving up. So I don't want you to speed up failing because that means you're never gonna do anything else. I want you to speed up the mistakes and figure out how to learn from them. And please, if you don't know how to learn from your marketing, business, branding mistakes, come talk to me Because I can definitely help I've got so much experience in mistake making. But I will teach you how to how to do that you know that create the game plan for moving forward after the mistake. Anyway, let's move on to discomfort number three and this one's a little bit more abstract but extremely valid and important. the discomfort of growth and letting go of your old beliefs and identity to become the person you need to be. Whoa. You if you okay if you're a Jim Fortin fan. If you're not if you don't know who he is, you can go look him up once you're done with this episode. But I have been listening to him again and I've been on like I've not I probably haven't talked about it a huge amount yet. I'm going to have to do an entire episode on this but I've been in an accelerated program this year with the incredible Selena gray who's been my Let's call her my financial empower. Coach and I have been learning really how we have to let go of the old things that we believed and the way we saw ourselves. So our identity and so the way we associated in order to create this successful version of ourselves, I know this, like bear with me, cuz I know this is a bit a little bit heavy. I'll give you a more tangible example. So I always associated with being an underdog. So I, I always felt like the underdog in life. Not because I was like, raised with like, like I was lacking. But I so I never had like a formal education, like I was homeschooled. And then I went and started studying in other places, like I never went to university. And if you hearing that, you're like, oh, gosh, he's not qualified. Then, you know, you're not my person. It's okay. You can judge me, but I didn't have the university education when I was, you know, pursuing my musical theater theater Korea, I was like one of the few people auditioning at these shows like for these musicals that hadn't been to walpa Oneida. So I'd only ever had private tuition. I sort of I grew up in this random like I in a little town called kingscliff. Like on the Gold Coast, I'm sorry, look, south of the Gold Coast, it was like the Queensland New South Wales border was like a little surf town, whereas everyone else, you know, that was doing theater was like in Sydney or Melbourne. And so I just always felt like this underdog who had to sort of like fight a little bit harder to get what she wanted. And I loved it. I actually thrived with that identity for a very long time. Like it's served me because it gave me this extra fire. And I was like, yeah, just watch me. I'd have people that were like, Oh, you know, you might want to, you know, be more realistic. Set your expectations right for this. You know, I had people telling me that, you know, just don't get your hopes up for this one. And you've come really far you should just be you should be proud of yourself for how far you've come. And that would just like that literally happened when I was standing. The final round of auditions for Jersey Boys and hearing that like, I mean, it was a punch in the guts because of who it came from. But then it also made me just go okay. Watch me is a very long story, but I'll get to the point. So I loved that I was an underdog and I was so proud of it and I was still achieving all the things that I needed to achieve and it was good. But then what happened this year is I started doing a lot of up leveling with my business, my business started to shift I started to you know, my personal brand became a lot more visible. I was attracting a larger audience. I was starting to hit some some financial goals and I was really sort of Setting my sights on the future. And then I started to feel this discomfort and imposter syndrome and all of these weird things were coming up but I was doing a lot of self sabotage. I was like what is going on here? And while I was having a session with my coach, I we basically uncovered the fact that I was still I was struggling because I was still embracing this underdog mentality. But then it didn't fit. It didn't align with me then needing to become a leader, but to step into this leadership position that I was creating for myself, like it didn't support the personal brand I was trying to build. And I realized that it was actually holding me back. And it was meaning that I was struggling with with my pricing and my positioning. And I was trying to sort of keep myself on this. I was like, because I want to help other underdogs. And we had this look sort of realization that I had to sort of like, yes, except that I will always have that will always be part of my story, but I can't be an underdog. If I want to help the underdog. I actually need to get myself out of that situation out of that mindset and identity in order to help people in a bigger way. And that wasn't easy to do. I I'm still I feel like I'm still it's been months and I still have little things that pop up, but I know what they On now and I'm able to deal with them. But what was really crazy is that when I realized that I had to let go of that version of me, or at least put it, you know, put it in the past kind of thing. I went through this really uncomfortable phase of almost mourning, mourning the loss of my old self, because it was familiar, like, I knew her. And we've been through so much together. And then I had to step into this scary unknown of like, Oh my goodness, but then who am I if I'm not an underdog? So I warned you that this was going to be a little bit yeah, a bit out there a bit different to the other two points, but I hope you're following me here. And maybe I'm hoping that maybe it gives you some food for thought to think about your own identity and, and whether you're maybe holding on to a different version of yourself, like for instance, you might be holding on to this version of yourself from from your corporate job or from your, your day job or something that you know, or maybe you're even holding on to your identity as a mother, for instance, and then that is making you kinda feel less than in this new role that you're trying to create like the they conflict it instead of fully embracing all the things that you are. And this new version of you that you need to become to blow up your personal brand and business, maybe you're holding on to something and it's it's actually holding you back. It's weighing you down. So, you know, just go gentle on it maybe. And do check out Jim Fulton because he's amazing for this kind of stuff. But again, bringing my long story short, you are going to have to let go of some some of your old crap. And you're going to have to step into the future version of yourself because our personal brand, it's just it's us. It's just an extension of you like and we have to really we have to embody our brands because it is you but if you want it to create help you create this future that you're dreaming about where you're in demand, you've got people lining up out the door to work with you, you've got a waitlist, you have you know you've got all this money In the bank, you're getting people calling you and asking you to speak on stages, like whatever that dream looks like for you. The the youth that from the past who was doing something different and wasn't achieving those, that's not the you that is going to get you to that dream that you want to achieve. You actually need to embrace the identity of that person who already has those things. And this is again, like this does this can do your head in Okay, sometimes it does my head in but I, I have to think about like, okay, so like, what would the seven figure CEO version of me do in this situation? How does she spend her time? What are the thoughts that she has, and I have to start embracing that and it's exciting, it's fun, but it's also scary. And then as I said, there's this period of discomfort and mourning and letting go of your old self and your will your old identity. So that again, is an essential part of your growth. And it's going to happen sooner or later and it'll happen multiple times like every time you're ready for an uplevel. It's like we shed our skin. And then we're able to show up as this new version of ourselves. And if you're aware of that, and you're more intentional about it, and the way you approach it, then you will, you're going to kill it. It's going to be so good. But when you don't know what's going on, which is what happened to me with the underdog thing, there was just so much frustration and self sabotage and like slowing myself down, holding myself back and like that drives you crazy when you don't know why. Second, I figured it out. It was like, Okay, I've got a plan now. So as you can see, there's a lot of discomfort waiting for you on the other side. We don't say on the other side, right now, really, and it's going to only increase because the firt like the closer you get to your dreams, the higher the bar you're going to set for yourself, the more you have to uplevel you have to get seen more and heard more. As your brand grows, you have to make bigger, scarier. stakes, like the mistakes we make. In the early days, when we're a little bit more invisible, we have a smaller audience and we're not, you know, there's not as much on the line, those smaller things. But then if your business is really blowing up and you're in front of a much bigger audience, the mistakes are going to get bigger too. And you're just going to have to be okay with that. But it's cool, because you'll be prepared. Because every mistake we make sort of like, it's like Bootcamp, which is like training ourselves for the even worse mistakes, and it's all good, as long as you see those mistakes as things that can, you know, have the ability to really guide you and provide this incredible clarity that wouldn't have come if you didn't make the mistake, then you can just embrace it. And then finally, that, yeah, letting go of of your old identity. You know, it's, it's coming for you. Every time I think, Okay, cool. I'm feeling good. I've got it together. I'm embracing where I'm at right now. Something will shift and I'm like, Oh, no, here we go. Again. I've got a I've got to level off again. And it can be exhausting. But again, it's it's exciting too because it is a sign of growth, it's a sign you're getting closer. So, I mean, I hope that you've this kind of maybe sparked some thought for you, maybe helped you, you know be able to celebrate a little bit more about some of the things that have been stressing you out or or making you uncomfortable because you can see that they're actually good things. And the big one, if you have not been experiencing any of this, so much of this what I'm talking about, if you're feeling comfortable and safe, it might be time to give yourself a little bit of a kick up the butt or I mean I can give you the kick up the butt if you want we all need that and you can start getting more uncomfortable and getting closer to the fire. So I really just I hope you can go away and do something with this information and please as I said, shoot me a you know shoot me a DM on Instagram or tag me in your stories with a screenshot of this and and just just let me know what's going on. You're in your head right now. If this was helpful and if you want me to create more content like this, and don't forget about the master class, how to become the go to expert in your niche, you can register at personal branding project.co slash expert and I would love to see you there. If you can't find a time that suits don't stress. As long as you're registered, I'll be sending out a replay but you do need to be registered otherwise you will miss out. So thanks for listening. I look forward to chatting you with you on the next one and in the meantime, go get uncomfortable.