I have to be honest, I didn’t come up with this topic on my own, but when I heard another blogger talking about writing a post like this, I couldn’t help but borrow the topic. Fear is a huge part of most of our lives and learning how to overcome it can be oh so difficult at times. This is especially true if you are a new blogger.
In 2017, I decided to start my own business. I knew for a long time that I had really wanted to start some type of creative design business, but I wasn’t sure what or when or how.
Things had changed with the contract work I’d been doing for a long time and I realized that this was my opportunity to try something new.
I was sitting in my office one night, thinking about what I could do to get a business going, and I came across a video for Elite Blog Academy. Now let me first say that I have never, ever, thought about becoming a blogger.
As a matter of fact, I’ve always felt that writing was a bit of a struggle for me. But something about that video and the ladies who were creating and building their own businesses really spoke to me. It’s that “if they can do it, I can too” feeling we sometimes get.
I felt like blogging could possibly be the way to help me grow a new business and I loved that these successful ladies were just normal, every day, awesome moms who were making amazing things happen in their lives.
So I dove in head first, and let me just tell you, I was so excited about this new path I was on. I felt like this whole new world had opened up for me, and I had all this new opportunity ahead.
And that was until the fear started to set in. Yep, you know what I’m talking about. You get so excited about starting something new, and you feel unstoppable, and that’s when the brain takes over, and you start to overthink EVERYTHING!
You go from, “I can do anything” to “what the heck am I doing.” And the panicky feeling you get with that, well, it can really crush your spirit if you let it.
So the day I decided to write this post, I was listening to a ProBlogger podcast. And by the way, let me just say that if you haven’t yet discovered podcasts, you don’t know what you are missing.
There are podcasts for every topic you can think of, but for me, I’ve found some amazing bloggers and small business owners who share everything, and I mean everything about blogging and growing a business.
And that is so helpful to someone trying to find their way in the blogging and business world.
The podcast I was listening to was episode 205: 5 Obstacles Bloggers Face (And How to Get Over Them) and it was a keynote from the ProBlogger event in Brisbane.
Darren Rowse who is the founder of ProBlogger.com had five speakers come on stage and speak about various challenges bloggers face. The session that spoke to me the most was the one about the challenge of blogging fear with Brooke McAlary.
She spoke about the fear of being judged as a blogger and putting yourself out there for all to see. She said for a while that fear caused her to procrastinate and question her voice. She didn’t want to offend anyone, and she wanted people to like her.
Don’t we all feel that way?
I could completely relate to what she was saying. The fear of failure, of not saying the right things, not being the best at what you do, worrying about what people might say behind your back, well these are all major fears that I’m sure most people struggle with in various ways.
I know I do.
Brooke said that once she identified that fear was behind the struggles she faced, she decided to write a post about it and her popular post 10 Things I’m Afraid to Tell You was born. She said the post allowed her to release some of her fears and it really resonated with her audience.
Because we all deal with some kind of fear, right? And that’s completely normal.
So Brooke, I’m grateful to have stumbled across your section in the ProBlogger podcast, and I hope you don’t mind if I borrow your idea and list out some of the things I’m afraid of. I’m going to put it out there, and hope for the best.
So here we go, here are the 10 things I’m afraid to tell you as a new blogger.
1. I think I’m a terrible writer
Writing is hard for me. And it’s a lot of work. It seems to come so easy for some people, but not for me. Or maybe it’s just that I keep telling myself that I’m not a good writer. I’ve come to realize that with a little practice, it does get a bit easier.
So, it’s ok that writing is not my biggest strength. And it’s also ok if my grammar isn’t perfect, or if I misspell a word or two. I’m on a mission to help others build a beautiful brand, website and business they love, and that’s most important to me.
2. Why would anyone want to read any of my posts
Hello again first fear on my list. No one judges us harder than we judge ourselves, right? Why on earth would anyone want to read something from someone who can’t write?
There are so many amazing bloggers and so many great writers, and I worry about getting lost in that big sea of blogging greatness. Makes me a little scared to blog. But I also know that I have a voice and a message and that I will eventually reach the people that need that message the most. So onward I go.
3. I’m southern, and so is my voice, I can’t make videos
I’m really struggling with wanting to start creating video tutorials so I can show my readers how to do things that will help them develop their websites, but gah, my southern voice just takes over.
Why is it so hard to hear our own voices? And especially when we have a strong accent. But, I know I just have to try and not worry about it. My voice is here to stay. We have to learn not to be so critical of ourselves and what we perceive as flaws. I guess if someone doesn’t care for my twangy voice, well, they just don’t have to listen, right?
4. I really do worry about what people think
Don’t we all on some level? I absolutely worry about what I’m writing and how people might judge me. Sometimes that can be overwhelming to the point that you don’t want to put anything out there. But I guess if I can reach just one person and make a difference in their lives, then I’ve done my job.
5. Most days I’m completely overwhelmed
So much to do and never enough time to do it. I think most of us feel that way no matter what we do. But add in the pressure of trying to start a new business, and its success or failure is fully in your hands, well, that just makes things a bit more stressful wouldn’t you say?
I’ve come to realize that when things become almost unbearably overwhelming, and thoughts of throwing in the towel crop up, if I can just take a deep breath, calm down a bit and re-focus, after a day or two, everything gets a little easier.
6. I’m going to a blogging conference across the country . . . all by myself . . . and I really hate to fly
This was a really big decision for me. I decided to attend my first blogging conference which is all the way on the other side of the country, and I’m going alone. So many fears cropped up with this one. I’m one of those big ole’ chickens when it comes to flying. I might need to hold someone’s hand, but I’m not sure my neighbor will appreciate that too much.
The conference is five days of intensive training, and I worry that I’m not ready. But sometimes I think we have to step WAY out of our comfort zones in order to grow and move to the next level in our lives and businesses. Sometimes you just have to go for it.
7. Fear of complete and utter failure
Wow, that sounds so doom and gloom, doesn’t it? I need some type of movie background music for that one!
But seriously, here come the what ifs . . . What if they hate my website, what if they hate my writing, what if they hate my web design work, what if my prices are too high, what if I do all this work and this business fails. What if I can’t do what I say I can.
What if, what if, what if?
Those dang what ifs will make you crazy if you let them. You may be dealing with your own set of what ifs, but if there is anything I’ve learned to be true, it’s that most of the time, if not almost all the time, the what-ifs never happen.
We create these thoughts to protect ourselves from IMPENDING DANGER. Say that with your deepest announcers voice.
The best thing we can do for ourselves is just to push those what-ifs right on out the door. There really is no time for too much worry when you are trying to create a life you love.
8. Are my prices too high, am I charging enough?
This is a struggle I think many people face when pricing out their products and services. We know how much work we do for our customers, how many hours we put into our projects and the level of skill that we have acquired over the years. I don’t know about you, but I still find it really hard to come up with pricing for my services.
But, I honestly believe you should charge your customers what your time and skill set is worth. And the right customers for your business will come along.
9. I’ll never be as good as they are
Oh, the fear of comparison will get ya every time. So as I’m building this blog and starting my web design business, I keep a list of other bloggers and designers I admire. Some, I say I want to be when I grow up, ha! And it’s so easy to look at what they are doing, the success they have, the audience they reach and want to compare yourself.
Don’t do it!
I’ve heard this saying a few times now, and it’s so very true – “As a new blogger,don’t compare your beginning to someone else’s middle”.
Who knows what the future holds for any of us. If you have a passion, then go for it. Who cares if there are a thousand other people doing the same thing you are and doing it better. Just be patient and keep at it. And most importantly, believe in yourself and surround yourself with people who believe in you.
10. What if I just can’t do it
So deep down, I don’t really believe this. Let’s call this more of a surface level fear. But it’s definitely there. I’m typically a confident person. I believe in thinking you can do anything you set your mind to. But I also have that little nagging voice inside that says “but what if ya can’t.” Well, I guess I’ll just have to deal with that when it happens, but until then, I’m just going to keep truckin’ right along. Because, why not?
The road to becoming a new blogger is scary
So as I’m writing this, part of me feels like it was good to get some of this weight off me, but the other part is thinking, “OMG, did I really just type all that and I’m gonna put it out for all to read.”
Yep, I guess I am.
I’m a real person with real things that worry me and cause me to feel fear. But at the end of the day, it’s what you do with those fears that either holds you back or propels you forward.
I know that the worry will never go away, but I refuse to let define me. I think the best thing you can do when you feel really fearful about something is to ask yourself “what’s the absolute worst thing that can happen if that fear comes true.”
If you can identify it, realize that the worst will most likely never happen, and make peace with it, then you are prepared for the worst, right?
I love what Darren Rowse said at his ProBlogger event about fear:
“Fear can be a good thing. It can warn you to run away from something that’s about to kill you. It gives you that adrenaline and helps you to run faster, I think. It can also be there to give you adrenaline to fight your way through something and to pay attention. If you’re feeling fear about blogging, that’s because you’re about to do something important, something life changing. Let it be a signal to you.”
I think I’ll choose to think I’m doing something important and hopefully one day, life-changing for someone.
Don’t let fear hold you back. Give it a nod that you know it’s there and politely ask it to be on its way. You are not in need of its services at the moment.
What fears do you struggle with as a new blogger or business owner?
I’d love to know what challenges you face and if you have any great tips that help you overcome the challenges and the fears. Let me know in the comments below!