"Let's have a quick call tomorrow, I have some thoughts I want to share."
Looks like a completely normal request from a client, doesn't it? And yet, it's enough to get me spiraling.
"Sure, let's connect in the morning," I replied, trying to keep it all cool. But behind the facade questions were bubbling up. What was she unhappy with? Could I do anything before the call? Is there something I missed?
I know it sounds silly. I also know I had a dream where we were fighting over the details of the current project.
Impostor syndrome knows no bounds. It's that tiny voice in your head that says you're not good enough. You're not doing well enough. And you'll be found out for the fraud that you are. Any minute now...
Whenever that tiny voice comes up do your best to ignore it. When that fails do your best to recognize what's going on.
You're not a fake. You're just a regular person in a world where perfection seems like a goal everyone else has already figured out. After all, you see the unabridged version of yourself and compare it with the edited version of your most successful colleagues.
Note what's happening, smile, look in the mirror, and say "No, not a fake."
And that client meeting? She wanted to tell me she was really happy with our work together and we bounced off a few ideas for bringing more value to customers. It was great. It also made me feel a bit silly. But it will definitely let me sleep better tonight.
From the blog
10 Lessons From My First 20 Months of Freelancing
Back in May 2019 I went into the Registry Agency and filed the documents for my incorporation. 20 months, 161 invoices, and one global pandemic later, I get the question "How did you start and what's your advice?" more and more often. I took the things I'd almost always mention in such conversations and created this list – hope my perspective will help you define if freelancing is right for you.
Hand-selected pieces for you
7 Steps to Giving Your Newsletter a Personality That Wins Loyal Subscribers
If you're sending out newsletters to your audience, injecting some personality is a proven way to boost engagement and create a true relationship with your audience. I can attest to the validity of the advice from Sendinblue. Definitely focus on presenting a personal opinion and fostering a conversation! (Which reminds me, what do you think about this edition? Drop me a line and let me know!)
How to Stay Motivated When You’re (Still) Stuck at Home
This pandemic has been hard on all of us. HBR shares some ideas on how to get beyond anger and what you can't change and move forward. Their advice on self-care is an especially good reminder about what you should focus on: exercising, being outside, doing a creative hobby, connecting with family and friends, laughing, praying, journaling, going to a religious service, reading, and listening to music.
Internal Links for SEO: The Definitive Guide
Internal links are a key element for SEO – and the good news is that they are fully in your control! Here's a good article that explains how to strengthen internal linking by finding out the best articles to link your new piece from, performing a linking audit, and using the power of anchor keywords.
7 Social Media Analytics Best Practices You Should Follow
I was sort of on the fence about recommending this piece mainly because it reads like an ad piece for a specific social media analytics tool. But the advice there is just so good and actionable! And even if you don't use the same tool, you can replicate most steps by just looking into the platform's native analytics data. Yes, it'll take you more time but it's doable.
The Anatomy of the Perfect Blog Post
According to research, there are a lot of similarities between high-performing blog posts. They are long, they take a long time to write, and the headlines take some 10-15 variations before the winning one comes around. Here's an infographic with the details.
Things I'm enjoying right now
- This great ad from KitKat — no logo, not even a full slogan. Yet you know exactly what's going on. It's the power of brand voice done right.
- This fun Twitter account — it's an example of what is wrong with usability and "customer-centric design" that happens without the customer. My favorite? "As a website visitor, I want to see key content in an auto-advancing carousel, so that even though ~80% of the content is off-screen, it is thankfully above the fold."
- This giveaway for AdWorld 2021 conference tickets — if you still haven't taken part in my newsletter subscriber giveaway, the new weekly prize might attract your attention. It's a great event jam-packed with value – and there's a ticket waiting for you. Since you're already a subscriber, leave the same email to register your interest and invite friends for additional entries. Good luck!
One more thing...
Do you think this content will help someone? Go ahead and forward it!
Was the email forwarded to you? Then you need your own subscription!