Social media, blogging, Facebook page-running, putting yourself out there in any way, can be deeply rewarding. Your message and what is burning in you can reach and touch many. You create relationships with likeminded people and you give yourself a canvas on which to paint. You learn, grow and find yourself living more deeply because you want to learn more deeply in order to share your truth.
AND. Oh, there's always an AND.
AND it can show you all the places in you that are uncomfortable. When you get a new 'Like' on your page, it feels great. And, when a couple of people 'Unlike' you, you unexpectedly find yourself thinking about it all day, even though 99% of your followers are still resonating with your material and you know they appreciate you. But you find yourself thinking about that 1%.
Because everything has a root in everything. You can't use social media as a sensitive person and not be confronted with your need for approval, your tendency to compare yourself with others, your feelings of inadequacy and your self-doubt. All the stuff we find it hard to talk about.
So, here is my guide to using social media when you are sensitive and take things in deeply. It is dedicated to all the brave people who decide to share themselves but might be put off doing so for fear of facing criticism or who compare themselves and let that put them off altogether. I have a handful of very dear friends who are about to embark on this journey and I wanted to put all my learning in one place to be supportive as they take their first steps.
1. If you only reach one person, your work is done
Sharing your truth is about sharing your truth. That's it. If only one person connects with or resonates with what you share, it's enough.
2. Comparison only leads to pain
Even if you reach a million likes or find yourself with 50,000 subscribers to your blog, there will always be someone who has a higher reach, who seems more 'successful'. If your compass is set towards comparison and this measure of success, you will always find evidence that you are not quite enough. And, when you stop comparing yourself, you will find how generous you feel towards others and you will want to champion others and share their work. When you believe in All-Round Abundance, there is space for everyone to express themselves, have their following and we feel genuinely happy for everyone.
3. You are having a conversation with yourself
When we share our truth, the purpose is to get clearer in ourselves. We share our journey because we feel a tug to do so. But it would be just as valuable to share your insight and understanding in a journal. Once you know this, other people's opinions and whether or not they like what you say will become less important.
4. You cannot please everyone so you might as well be truthful and let go
If everyone likes everything you say all the time (which is highly unlikely), it probably means you are just saying what you think others want to hear. It is normal, healthy and to be expected for some people to disagree or to think you are talking nonsense. And we are all at different stages of development. Some people may not be ready to hear what you are saying, or they may just need a different angle on the same truth.
5. Do your spiritual work
For many of us, it is so easy let this slip. But if you want to stay strong and share from a place of love and authority, you have to go inside and tap into your well of wisdom. And to find the truth of who you are beyond what the world presents. If you get lost, fearful or start to overthink, you can ask yourself, 'Whose hand am I holding?' Your answer will either be one of your spiritual super-heroes or your small personality self. They feel completely different.
6. You absolutely must surround yourself with true friends and at least one good mentor
When you put yourself out there, you absolutely must, must be able to check in with people who love you just the way you are, who trust your soul journey, who understand that a feeling is like a passing cloud. Who champion you but give you honest feedback. Who see you. And it is most useful to have at least one person who has absolutely no idea what Facebook or Blogger is. There's nothing like trying to explain something to someone who has no idea what you're talking about to bring you back to true perspective!
7. Write as if you are writing to one dear person
You can't possibly address more than one person when you write. It is a deeply personal process. If it helps, imagine you are writing a letter to your child or a beloved friend. This way, you keep your heart in the picture and you get more courageous.
8. Make friends with your inner critic
You know that part of you that says 'you have nothing worth saying' and 'it's already been done' and 'who wants to read what you have to share?' Well, you can choose to listen to this voice (and hold the hand of your personality) or stand up straight and choose not to buy into the story this part of you is telling. You can even interview it. What credentials does it have, exactly, to be able to give you sound advice? And, also, what does it really want? Often, if you ask deeply, you discover it is trying to protect you. You can thank it, make friends with it and then, in each moment, let it go.
9. Trust in the Divine Plan that is unfolding
Affirm regularly that whoever will benefit from your message will find you easily. That you invite in all support and help necessary to keep you strong and clear and spiritually connected. Whenever you feel overwhelmed and over responsible for how your message reaches others, sit quietly and imagine an angel quietly-but-confidently handling everything for you. Hand over any of your fears, ambitions and tendencies to push the river. And make yourself a cup of tea, knowing that all is handled and all is well.
10. Define success for your sharing journey
What is success for you? Really? The answer to this question is enormously important. Use this list to create a picture of what you want to share and why. Then get strong in that and stick it somewhere visible so that you can come back to it whenever your mind tries to suck you into comparison, self-doubt or self-attack.
A long post, I know. I trust it will reach the people who can benefit from it.
Only you can say what you want to say in the way you will say it. And that is needed.