There’s something that every single one of us in business suffers from, especially if we’re person-centred entrepreneurs.
We know too much.
We are so embroiled in it all. The daily routines of keeping our lives in order, the actual work and service of our business, the endless ideas, planning and reviewing in our heads. All of it, all the time.
Even if we take time to step away, work on the business rather than in it, we can’t escape ourselves. We can’t escape our own knowledge – and that’s where the real curse is.
The curse of knowledge is a powerful thing. It means we take for granted everyone else knows at least some of what we do. That the benefits of working with a coach, or going on a yoga retreat, or getting social media support are obvious. That what happens as part of those processes, and the impact, is obvious.
And this isn’t just about the classic (and sound) advice to bring to mind your ideal client and identify how you can solve their problem. Benefits over features and all that malarkey.
It’s about you. In a marketplace stuffed full of people doing what you do, or the choice to do something else entirely, the differentiating factor is you. Why not pick the other massage therapist, change consultant, coach or designer?
Understanding what’s so very wonderful about ourselves is something we all tend to be absolutely crap at. Even if we make time, even if we’re adept at listening to ourselves.
Because we can’t fully escape what we know and who we are – what we live and breathe everyday.
Incidentally, this is one of the most powerful reasons to work with a writer. A writer can tune-in to what you bring, crack it open and lay it out for all the world to see in simple, glowing terms. They will notice and highlight things that you’re blind to. They are on your side but distant enough to see you in all your glory.
But I would say that, wouldn’t I? So what if you’re not about to hire a writer?
Get someone else’s brain involved in what you do. Specifically, your clients’ brains. That’s the way to escape what you know and start with where they are.
There are loads of ways to do this:
- Read through feedback and testimonials. What is it about you and your offer that left people zinging? What words do they use? Are they the words you would have used about yourself?
- Ask friends. What 5 words would they use to describe you? You are your business, so this will be an insight to what flavour that is. Are you a minty fresh, cool, energetic presence, or a soothing, mellow, warming one? Or something else entirely? There’s room for all of us.
- Ask your professional network. You will bring a different vibe to your work than they do, and they will notice it. What is it about you?
- Ask clients. Ask clients you’re already working with what their reasons were for choosing you (on a form, face-to-face, on a Facebook poll, however you like). Ask potential clients in your world what they’re looking for and why they were drawn in your direction.
However you go about it, get out of your head. You will take for granted much of the wonderful stuff you know, the reasons why what you do is important, and I bet my last scrap of Easter egg you underestimate why you rather than anyone else out there.
Stop selling yourself short. See yourself more clearly by accepting the gift of someone else’s insight.
Be brave and go do it today.