Let me tell you…
It’s not without risk.
There is a risk if you show your readers exactly who you are, what you stand for and what you think.
I’ll get back to that risk in a moment.
First… what does it mean, "to be yourself"?
How can you be yourself?
Sounds like a stupid question. How can you NOT be yourself?
Yeah, it’s crazy, but something happens to us, naturally, when we start to write to a faceless crowd of people.
We do that when we write a book, a blog post or an email.
Then we tempt to style-up our language in manners that no human would use in oral conversations and by writing long sentences with an explicit prolonged vocabulary and carry-on-sentences that run forever like this one I am writing here.
Oh, and they don’t use contractions.
Yeah, that was bad. Nobody wants to read such a wall of text, but if you don’t force yourself to write like you talk to begin with…
That’s the kind of sentences you’ll create.
Back to the question…
You can be yourself by:
- Writing like you talk
- Wording your opinions
- Taking a stand
- Daring to be controversial
Writing like you talk
If you’re in doubt about how to write like you talk, I suggest to do it. Talk.
There are apps and programs that can help you turn talked words into written words.
You could also train yourself.
Every time you write something, ask yourself if you would say that sentence if you were talking to a friend.
Wording your opinions
This is risky. Yet in some cases necessary.
If people don’t know where you stand, how can they trust you?
That doesn’t mean telling people about whether or not to get a shot and 4-5 boosters.
Or wearing a mask or not.
Unless you’re in the health niche, of course.
It doesn’t mean telling people if you think Biden’s an old fool. Or Trump is just a maniac.
Unless your niche is politics.
It means wording your opinion about something that is relevant to your niche.
Yes, you’ll lose some subscribers, but others will agree with you and become more loyal towards you.
Taking a stand
It also means taking a stand.
If you claim to be an honest marketer, then you cannot afterwards promote stuff that you know is stolen from someone else.
If you do… you’ve shown your audience that you cannot be trusted and that you’re just in it for the money.
That’s kind of a stand, too.
Taking a stand means having an opinion about something and stand for it.
No matter what kind of money or B.Ling you could gain from it not standing for it.
Daring to be controversial
This is risky.
It takes guts to take the shit-storm that will hit you.
So you may leave this one out.
I’ve seen people use it and they became well-known and rich.
I guess we look up to people who dare to go against public opinion.
Like the ones who says that AI has its place but not in good writing while the world is swooning over ChatGPT and whatever the other name is from Google.
Kudos to them.
What’s the risk?
The risk is angry comments or nasty emails.
If you don’t like to get those, stay away from having a public opinion or making a stand.
But you’ll also lose out on the advantages of daring.
A positive risk is that you’ll be seen as one who doesn’t fall-in with the wall-paper and your tripe will love you more because you have something in common.
I have an opinion about pronouns or not.
I have a political opinion based mostly on emotions since I don’t want to waste my time or good mood by watching the news or reading about it.
I have an opinion about vegans and carnivores.
I have an opinion about cats, dogs and having bats as pets (don’t!).
But I rarely share.
Am I afraid of people’s reactions?
To some degree, yes.
But more importantly:
It’s not relevant.
Whether I would vote Biden or Trump is irrelevant for knowing how to write the best emails.
Whether I hunt my salad or pluck my steak out of the freezer is irrelevant when it comes to knowing how to create a good course.
Whether or not I talk about myself in third person (she/her) or just talk about myself and assume that people can figure out my gender from pictures or live streams is irrelevant.
What you shouldn’t do, though, is to be a chameleon.
A chameleon changes colors with its surroundings.
The chameleon person changes opinions with their surroundings.
It’s okay, of course, to take a stand and then change your mind later. Every sane human being does that.
But don’t change your mind based on the latest reply you get to an email or blog post.
In 1991, Amina Annabi performed this song for France for the European Song Contest. It was my favorite…
The song’s title is "C’est le dernier qui a parlé qui a raison" – meaning it’s the last one to talk who is right.
In other words: it’s talking about a chameleon person. Or at least that’s how I understand the lyrics.
Listen and watch here: https://youtu.be/SIT_8cvQn9M