Being on line, having a blog, even having a business can feel like weird hybrid of honesty and contrivance. I’ve spent the past 12 years learning and making personal development (by which I mean stress management, coaching, NLP, confidence building etc.) my life’s work.
This stuff changed my life in so many fantastic ways – I want to share it with as many people as I can and shout loudly:
‘Life doesn’t have to be a struggle. You’re not weak/bad/horrible or whatever crap you’re brain sometimes tells you you are.’
Yet turning it into a business that will allow me to help a whole load more people I’m currently able to, and protect me and my family from the whims of politicians and the economy has presented a new learning curve for me.
But that’s ok – I love learning so have set about the task with gusto.
I’ve learned how to set up a blog and a website. Learned that it’s important to have a strong brand. Learned that if I was going to do this then basically the brand had to be built around me (cue icky, twisty feelings of wanting to hide behind a nicely designed, generic logo and the sofa.)
And I now have this shiny platform, nice logo, very pretty picture of me and I’m building an audience of very lovely people who seem to ‘get’ what I’m trying to do.
But the big fly in the ointment is that I don’t feel like I’m being real. I feel inauthentic and overly shiny and smiley and like I’m being this strange facsimile of myself.
According to Corbett Barr from Think Traffic http://thinktraffic.net/33-things-i-have-never-told-you most bloggers struggle to find their ‘voice’ – meaning having a writing style that truly communicates what they’re actually about instead of this public/professional voice most of us fall into.
I know I can relate to that big style.
My intention is to keep moving towards that place of being really authentic in the content I provide here. The pretty picture at the top of the blog? It took a gazillion shots to get that – and in the interest of honestly here are just a selection of the one’s that didn’t get selected!
I spent this past weekend with one of my mentors – you’re unlikely to have heard of him unless you live in Burnley in the northwest of England – but everyone should know about him because he’s truly wonderful. His name’ Chris Grimsley and he runs a training company called NLP in the Northwest. He’s the most gifted trainer I have ever worked with or been trained by. He’s responsible for opening up the world of NLP to me in a way that was accessible, understandable and life changing.
This weekend I assisted him on an NLP foundation course he was running. It was a great experience – a bit like being an apprentice. It was awesome witnessing other people ‘getting’ it for the first time.
I’ve not seen Chris for a few months but I know he follows my blog and Facebook page and to be honest I’ve been feeling a bit pleased with myself of late about how much work I’ve put into the online side of my business and how my following is growing slowly but surely.
So when Chris turned to me and said
“I’m curious, what IS Bounce?” I was totally non-plussed. In fact, I wasn’t even sure what he meant – and I certainly didn’t know how to answer.
So I really had to think hard about it – and realised that whilst I sort of know what I’m trying to do – other people who can’t see inside my head don’t.
So here goes:
Bounce is the name of my company – the official entity that allows me to trade, sell my services and take payments for said services. But Bounce covers a few different types of activities – namely the work I do in organisations – consultancy, training and face to face coaching, and my fledgling online business which consists of articles and blogging at the moment with a few to creating my own products, online coaching and training programmes further down the line.
Because the online work has evolved there’s still some confusion there. I’m not 100% sure how to resolve this but the first thing I’m going to do is set up a separate website for my face-to-face business and have a more distinct separation with my online work. I’m also going to review my website and blog to make sure I’m giving the sort of information that people really want and are finding useful. I’m also considering removing the word ‘Bounce’ from my blog s that it’s just Jocasey.com – but I might still keep the circle of people – just because I love it so!
With that in mind I’d love to beg a favour from you. Would you leave a comment below and tell me what YOU think I can do to clear up any confusion about what it is I do and am offering. Is there anything you’d like me to provide that I’m no already? Any questions you have that I’ve not answered. Anything you’d like me to stop/start doing, or do less/more of?
The learning curve here is steep and can feel isolated at times. So I’m hoping that putting myself out there and admitting that I don’t have all of the answers and don’t always know if what I’m doing is hitting the right mark will build up a dialogue that I can learn from and grow a blog that really is giving you what you want and find useful.