We’re all the way to Guidepost 9 in Brene Brown’s 10 Guideposts for Wholehearted Living.
This week’s guidepost is about letting go of self-doubt and what you’re supposed to do and embracing meaningful work.
I particularly like the part about letting go of what you’re supposed to do. We all enter our adult years with ideas about what people expect from us, about what we’re supposed to do.
And often those expectations are coming from people who care about us, who want what’s best for us… and who we want to please. But often, their expectations are all about what they think is best for us instead of giving us the room to explore what is best for us based on our own desires, hopes, dreams, passions, and needs.
Even if you’ve bucked the trend of what you’re supposed to do by choosing to pursue freelance writing — which is the case for many, many writers — it’s still easy to get caught up in what you’re “supposed” to do as a freelancer.
You’re “supposed” to earn six figures a year or more.
You’re “supposed” to travel a lot, embracing the freedom of freelancing.
You’re “supposed” to land Fortune 500 companies as clients.
You’re “supposed” to work four hours a day or less.
Any one of these is fine as a goal. (Or all of them.) As long as it’s your goal. But it might not be.
Your goal might be something completely different. And I know from personal experience, you will achieve your own goals much faster than those you borrowed from someone else.
I also like that letting go of what you’re supposed to do is a step toward doing meaningful work.
I’ve seen firsthand how embracing meaning in your work can change your entire outlook… and your outcomes, too.
The first time I defined my “why” — the reason I do what I do — it was about my kids and my family. I wanted to be as present as I could be as my kids were growing up. My husband felt the same way. We homeschooled them through sixth grade. We were able to take breaks during the day to read or cuddle or play with them.
Even when they were in traditional schools, we were able to drop them off and pick them up… and stay up late cheering them on when they’d left deadlines to the last minute.
It was a powerful “why.” But then my kids grew up, and it was time to revisit it. This time, I put my focus less on paying the bills and having a flexible schedule and more on what I want to bring to the world. And holy smokes, did that light a fire under my business.
Since shifting from a financial-and-flexibility motivator to a how-can-I-make-a-difference motivator, my business has jumped to a new level. Now, to be fair, I’ve been at this for 20 years, so I may have just been due for a level-up.
But I’m also enjoying my business in a new, deeper way because I see myself doing meaningful work that creates positive ripples far beyond the benefits it brings to me.
If you struggle with meeting other people’s expectations for you or you haven’t looked at your work in terms of what you bring to the world, then my challenge to you this week is to take a little time to reflect on your goals. Are they your own? And what are the changes — big and small — that your work makes for others?
Get a handle on these things, embrace meaningful work, and I’m willing to bet it changes your trajectory… in a good way.
New on the Site
Why not combine the importance of reading and your love of writing into a challenge… one where you could land a paid byline on Wealthy Web Writer? Join in the Wealthy Web Writer Book Review Challenge happening this month… learn something new… practice your skills… and maybe even get paid and published. You can find the details here.
Can you really write from anywhere? Anytime? Take a laptop to the beach, the mountains, or a hotel lobby? Reality Blogger Suzanna Fitzgerald recently put copywriting on-the-go to the test and shares her experience… and her tips.
Some writers assume you need a lot of technical knowledge to specialize in User Experience (UX) Copywriting, but that’s not the case. It’s actually very accessible for writers. You can learn more about what UX Copywriting is and how you can offer it to your clients in this new Roving Report.
Around the Web
From Content Marketing Institute, some fun ideas for breaking through writer’s block.
Are you doing the right kind of keyword research for the goal you’re trying to accomplish? Check out the four different types of keyword research and the best tools for each one.
People want to know what a company is about — its brand story — before they make a purchase. Here, you’ll find some ideas on how to weave a client’s brand story into their entire website.
I often say that taking action is the number one ingredient in most success stories I hear. But this article makes a strong case for a different number one ingredient… and I can’t say I disagree.
That’s all for now. Make it a great week!