December 4, 2023 at 8:06 am #2237
My entire 2021 was spent avoiding toxic family and working with coaching clients.
‘Online-ing’ was just too much that year so I leaned hard into my list and snagged enough AMAZING coaching clients to limp by… while I crawled out of my black hole of bad decisions and crippling depression.
The toxic family sitch was so bad that talking to people who were lost, unfulfilled, and burnt-the-fuck-out all day was a welcome escape. 🤣
I’m strange, we know this now.
So yeah, it lit me up… for a few reasons.
🥰 No. 1 – It validated me.
I was actively working through my own lost, unfulfilled, and burnt-the-fuck-out life + business (privately at this point) so a lot of what they shared really validated what I was thinking + feeling.
🥰 No. 2 – I had willing + wonderful (paying) brand strategy clients to LEARN ON.
Having so many clients struggling with the same sorts of things as I was provided a beautiful melting pot of completely different people going through a very similar ‘stage’ of business for me to figure out my YOU-shaped way of approaching ‘brand strategy’ with. I read all the books + watched all the seminars. But now, I had all these really phenomenal kindreds, I cared so much about, to actively help through it. Making a real world difference AS I was figuring all of this shit out (personally + professionally) gave me a huge confidence boost!
🥰 No. 3 – It made me want to innovate.
I’m an injustice fighter for my loved ones… and my kindreds are an extension of that fighter in me. When I see them being screwed with… I feel called to go fuck someone/something up for them. I feel like I need to say something (call it out)… and do something (find a workaround). 👈 Which I used to think that was a huge flaw, but now it’s a comforting AF truth.
For months, I felt called to ‘fight’ for people’s dreams every day.
And it gave me purpose.
Every single solo I talked to (clients, peers, friends, subscribers, you name it) had their own version of ‘I don’t know if I’m cut out for this!’
From solos who have been in business for 5+ years…. to solos who were fresh off online business 101.
From solos who had several team members… to solos who are dreaming of the day they can afford a part-time VA.
From solos who had profitable businesses… to solos who have barely sold their $7 e-book.
From solos with 100’s of thousands of followers… to solos who don’t even have a website yet.
From solos who you’d never guess were seriously considering facing the real possibility of peacing-out on entrepreneurship entirely… to solos who have been on the brink of a full-blown strait jacket for a while now.
All the defeatist thoughts + uncharacteristic regret… from really brilliant but burnt-out minds who I know for a fact are destined to change people’s lives with their out-of-box ideas… made me realize how fucking misled us SOLOpreneurs are by agency-backed gurus… and how hard it stings when you realize how duped you’ve been.
What upsets me the most is the BS dream they sell us.
A dream they know damn well won’t happen unless you have a big budget + big team doing all the work for you.
What they’re teaching isn’t sustainable… it isn’t profitable… and it for damn sure isn’t enjoyable… for us companies of ONE.
Their version of the dream doesn’t satisfy our passion. It doesn’t feed our purpose. It doesn’t build our fortune.
It just gives us a framework for becoming a slightly wealthy asshole who pretends to be a much wealthier asshole online.
I realized after a YEAR of listening to some of the coolest people on the internet complain about an industry that makes SOLOpreneurs feel like bored housewives + househusbands that I had finally found the villain to my kindred’s ‘job to be done’.
For a few years now, I’ve leaned into belief building when it comes to my writing + sales, anchoring most of my ‘pitch’ to the lies my kindreds believe and the perspective shifts they need to make to see how anti-YOU-shaped our industry really is.
✅ YOU-shaped era
✅ Brandishing You
✅ You-Laced Floors
✅ The Support Lounge
✅ Fully YOU-stocked theme parties… I’m not fucking around.
It feels good to have a purpose but it feels even better to be busting so much BS… because that just so happens to be how my mind naturally works.
My uncanny ability to bust BS (regardless of whose BS I’m busting) has been a huge issue for a lot of people in my life so it feels good to be so at peace with it that I can wear this truth like a badge of the highest honor.
Suck it, gurus… I’m coming after you and your BS!! 💃🏽
December 4, 2023 at 2:50 pm #2242RicardoParticipant
I bust BS from a different lens. I’m big on the scientific concept of falsifiability. What this means is actively trying to disprove everything, and then only tentatively accepting for further investigation those things that cannot be disproven. A structured analytic technique called Analysis of Competing Hypothesis (ACH) is great for this. In practical terms, this means whenever someone asks me a question such as “find out where the weapons of mass destruction are in Iraq” or “find me where the opportunity is in the FinTech market” we need to unpack that and see what evidence actually supports weapons of mass destruction being in Iraq or that there is an opportunity in the FinTech market AND that it is more desirable than other markets in terms of market potential and market challenge to become a leading player in that market.
What upsets me the most about my industry are players peddling poison by using AI as a buzzword to sell something that either A) Fundamentally doesn’t work. OR B) Has not been proven to lead to better results over baseline human intuition.
In many circles, AI has devolved into rebranded statistics or is used in a way not supported by the technology. ChatGPT is the most well-known in popular discourse and in my strategic planning projects with kindreds, I’ve had to flag many cases of ChatGPT being used in a way that detracts rather than adds from a strategic assessment. Such as using ChatGPT as a calculator or asking ChatGPT to rank in priority order the factors that influence buyer behavior.
It is not just small to midmarket companies struggling with this. A law firm got caught using ChatGPT to citations that did not exist. Zillow applied a model that bought houses at prices unwarranted and lost almost 1 billion dollars. Walmart had issues where AI for hyper personalized recommendations led to recommendations to offensive/hateful products. AI-curated newsfeeds used to replace journalists have been caught creating fake news articles or offensive polls suggesting that a murder case was fake or actually a suicide.
I think many times the rush to apply “AI” onto a product or service is driven by a desire to cut corners or a get rich quick scheme honestly.
I will conclude this post by reaffirming that I am by no means anti-technology or anti-AI. On the contrary, this week I am submitting a proposal to speak at a ’24 conference on how I’m using predictive AI into models designed to predict how a competitive landscape could evolve over time for strategic planning decisions. My upset is related to industry players peddling harmful applications that can destabilize entire companies, and entire industries.
December 4, 2023 at 5:22 pm #2244
Damn bro, I love that!! The analysis system you geeked on sounds fascinating AF!!
I feel the same about AI too. Like so much other shit… a subset of people peddle the wrong uses and it derails people’s entire business.
I love your upset… connect with people about that!
Let the geeking out begin… 🥳
December 4, 2023 at 4:19 pm #2243Suzanne WynnParticipant
I’m having a hard time drawing the link between what pisses me off about my industry (the self-proclaimed gurus, the sleezy “ya gotta have THIS”! offers and mic snobs for example) relates to my kindred.
I get that we all hate animal cruelty, US Healthcare and overpriced jeans … but why do my kindreds care about my industry? Especially if they’re hiring me to do this for them?
What am I missing?!?!??!? 🤣😂🤪🤬
December 4, 2023 at 5:30 pm #2246
They care because they hate those things too. If not YOU… then they might end up with one of those sleazy bastards.
They care because they’re tired of the same guru… magic pill… holier than thou BS too. They just want to get ‘the job done’ without all this BS. And they want someone to admit to them… someone INSIDE the industry… that it’s BS… because they don’t believe in themselves enough to believe what their gut is telling them.
They care because right now it’s looking like they’re never going to get this ‘job’ done because of who they are and what they have going on… you’re the one that’s going to validate that they’re right… this is all BS, but it IS possible and here’s how I know.
You: I couldn’t stand that shit either. Here’s how I got around it… and it worked even better (and here’s why)!
December 4, 2023 at 8:44 pm #2248Suzanne WynnParticipant
Yes! Thank you.
So I’m hating on f’n old white dudes with huge backing trying to tell you how to run your business.
I’m hating on voice over dipshits practically masterbating over their microphones and how expensive they are. (As they say, it’s not what you’ve got, it’s how you use it!)
And audio “pros” who doesn’t understand the importance of music, sound effects and a real end.
I’m still working on how I got around it.
December 5, 2023 at 2:04 am #2257
Welcome! Keep marinating on it, sweets. You’ll connect the dots.
December 4, 2023 at 5:23 pm #2245Yashi SrivastavaParticipant
I struggled with this prompt more than the earlier ones. Here’s where I am at right now:
There are a few things that upset me:
1. UNSOLICITED UNIVERSAL SHOULDS. I find it troubling how some people INSIST that they know what you should do in your life – just because it worked for them or because it’s always been done this way or because everyone else is doing it. This is the kind of job you should get and this is how you should build a business and this is how you should parent. Ughh. People are unique. What they want and need is unique to them. I think offering advice without taking into account this uniqueness leads to more problems than solutions.
2. BEING LIMITED TO INTELLECTUAL KNOWLEDGE. This is the hole I recently dug myself out of. I KNEW so much about all the science and the research on living a happy and fulfilling life. And yet, I found myself struggling to be happy – even though I had a lot of what I’d once longed for. What was I missing? An embodied understanding of what all that knowledge felt like. I knew being kind to myself would help me. But I needed to stop over-identifying with my mind so that I could tap into the wisdom of my body, heart, and soul and learn what it feels to be kind to myself. It has been game-changing. So much of the self-improvement world out there is purely mental. There’s isn’t enough out there about how to actually put this advice into practice in a way that shifts one’s way of being.
3. TRYING TO FIND ALL THE ANSWERS EXTERNALLY: People spend so much time and energy in trying to/hoping for things outside of them to change that they don’t make use of all the ways in which THEY could change their own lives. Yes, circumstances and people can be challenging. Yes, systems are broken and we need changes at the institutional/policy level. Yes, organizations should be designed to take care of employee well-being. AND, individuals have power too. Every single one of us can take action to improve our own lives – irrespective of what’s happening outside of us. It makes me frustrated to see so many people giving their power away.
I don’t know if I actually answered the prompt but these are the things that came up as of now.
December 4, 2023 at 5:41 pm #2247
OMG… I need your knowledge bombs on #2!! ‘Using it to shift one’s way of being’ – YESSSS!!! That’s what I think I’m chasing right now. I have a total disconnect with my body (for various reasons I’m actively unpacking).
And #3… I feel like this is more of the work I do (helping people take back their power) than ‘branding’. I so feel you on this, sweetie!
We really are doing such similar work! 🥰
These are brilliant things to connect on, Yashi! But definitely keep marinating on it and see what other things come up. Think about the things that are happening to your kindreds that pisses you off.
Who/what can you point to and call out for them?
December 5, 2023 at 4:00 am #2258Yashi SrivastavaParticipant
I so hear you on feeling disconnected with the body. Have lived most of my life in that disconnection. All the best with the unpacking! I’d say that’s definitely a key piece of the whole “being” puzzle 🙂
Thanks for nudging me to continue reflecting. There’s this one thing that has ENRAGED me ever since I was a child – and continues to do so: gender based norms and discrimination.
I grew up in India where female foeticide was prevalent. It still is.
That’s a more extreme version of what I’m talking about, but every single day I received messages about how good girls behave, what kind of a woman is a good woman, and what makes a good mother. Parts of me are still buried under that conditioning. I am actively working on digging them out.
With time, things have gotten even more challenging for women, I think. We’re told we can have it all. Whether or not all women want it all or even agree about what “all” means is a whole different story. We’re supposed to have it all and do it all and always put other people’s needs ahead of ours because that’s what good women do. And sooner or later, we’re burnt out, full of resentment because we constantly abandon ourselves in our pursuit of being good, selfless women.
What if we could stop all the self-abandonment?
What if we could care for ourselves like we care for others?
What if it was okay to be selfish?
Because here’s the thing: prioritizing our own needs, desires, and dreams can fuel us in a way not much else can.
And isn’t it better to give from a place of fullness rather than emptiness?
The societal norms were designed to keep us compliant.
Those of us who want freedom? We’ll need to break some rules.
Okay. That ended up being a bit of a rant but I do feel like it’s closer to what I see my kindreds going through and what I hope to help shift in their lives.
December 6, 2023 at 1:59 pm #2267
I couldn’t have said it better!!! WHAT IF, right?! That’s literally what I ‘play’ in my head all day, every day. WHAT IF! There’s so much programming we have to rid ourselves of. 🤗
December 5, 2023 at 5:34 am #2260Megan MatthewsParticipant
Shout out to Yashi because every single thing you’re saying hits me SO FREAKIN’ HARD, especially the Unsolicited Universal Shoulds, which are thrown ALL OVER my kindreds by mainstream forms of therapy and the mainstream world in general – they SHOULD want to blend in, they SHOULD mask their differences so they can “pass”, they SHOULD be less like themselves and more like the mainstream ideal, et-fucking-cetera. But you wanna know what REALLY grinds my gears about my industry (mental health counseling) in particular? The people out there actively peddling the idea that neurodivergent folks need to be trained (like puppies!) to act in ways that are more acceptable to mainstream (as in neurotypical) society – and *passing this off as a form of therapy*. Essentially, as far as I can discern, they’re pretty much programming people to stop acting like their authentic selves; which in my mind makes them no better than those who are still peddling “conversion therapy” to LGBT folks. And again, they are *passing this off as psychotherapy*. Those fuckwits grind my gears just as hard. (Side note: the national association for my profession has formally denounced the practice of conversion therapy. So it’s clearly not my gears that these knuckleheads are grinding…)
Okay, yeah, end of rant. I’m gonna go listen to Halestorm – Freak Like Me. (Content warning: This song is Hard Rock/Heavy Metal. Strong language is all OVER it. Which is why I love it. Also, Lzzy Hale is my goddess.)
December 6, 2023 at 1:59 pm #2268
Fuckwits are the WORST!!! I’d head bang with you any day, gurl! 💃🏽
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