This wasn't the post I intended to write.
But it's the one I needed to.
This has been on my mind for weeks now, and I'll be honest here, it's something I've greatly struggled with.
Remember the final showdown in Deathly Hallows between Harry and Voldemort (umm who could forget? ;) Yeah, it's like that in my head - an ultimate battle between what's on my mind and what I feel pressured to do.
I started out writing a post that was so detailed. So carefully outlined. So in-depth. All complete with an opt-in filled with worksheets and other downloads as the cherry on top.
You're supposed to do that sort of thing on your blog, aren't you?
- You're "supposed" to tack a shiny opt-in onto all your posts to grow that list.
- You're "supposed" to have big, beefy posts stuffed with tons of images. Examples. Data. Charts. Graphs. Infographics. Click-to-tweets. Stats. Links. ALL THE THINGS.
What I originally wrote was what anyone would call the start of a strong post. And talk about a killer lead magnet, this thing was gonna be a freakin' beast. Go big or go home, yeah?
On the surface, everything was great...
... So why was there this inner battle going on inside me the entire time I was writing it?
We're constantly told to "create epic content."
For a while, I thought that meant doing exactly what I set out to do with my original post for today: A detailed guide stuffed to the brim with every tip and piece of advice I could cram in on how to do xyz.
It's what people were expecting, wasn't it? Anything less wouldn't be good enough. It wouldn't be big enough. It wouldn't be "epic" enough.
For so long, I felt guilty if I didn't have a huge, in-depth guide whenever it came time for me to post. I thought anything else wouldn't measure up to what people expected of me. I thought it was the only way I could provide real value.
This way of thinking translated into things like,
"It's been 2 weeks since I last posted?? Well, now I gotta make sure this thing's even MORE in-depth to make up for that!"
It quickly became overwhelming to the point of me dreading to write any posts, period.
They had become this giant, formidable monster that I was desperate to avoid... which then led to even more guilt since consequently, I wasn't putting anything new out (besides my letters to the Creative Adventurers gang).
Because if I wasn't creating epic content, then how dare I post anything at all?
But lately, I've realized something:
I don't want to create "epic" content.
- I want to create content that grows and fuels a community. Content that sparks thoughtful conversations and builds meaningful relationships.
- I want to share stories. To go deeper than the surface-level and dig into what lies underneath.
- I want to get more raw. More vulnerable. More messy.
- I want to break through the information overload and help you actually take action. Not add to the overwhelm.
- I want to encourage you to explore your brand. Encourage you to make your own discoveries and create your own path.
THAT'S what truly epic content is to me.
That's what actually matters. That's what fires me up and what I feel driven to share. Anything else is beside the point.
Now does this mean I'm never going to write another guide or how-to post? No, not at all. BUT when I do, it'll be because it was the best way to share what I had to say. NOT because it was something I pressured myself into doing because I thought I had no other choice.
Action Steps for You:
It's so easy to get totally overwhelmed by all the things you're told that you're "supposed to do."
"You gotta do this, you gotta do that. If you're not doing THIS, then you're just crazy!"
Take a pause and listen to what your gut is telling you instead.
Is there something that doesn't feel right? Take time to explore why that is. What's not matching up? What's not working here? Did something once fit, but you've since outgrown it or want to move on?
- What am I pressuring myself to do?
- What do I feel like I'm actually being pulled/called to do?
- What do I want my content to accomplish for my brand and my community?
- What's MY version of epic content?
Embrace the experimentation. The exploration. The never-ending discovery.
After all, isn't that what adventure is all about?
I'd love to continue the conversation and hear your thoughts in the comments below.
So who wrote this, anyway?
Hey there! My name's Allison Barclay, and I'm a brand designer and mentor for adventurous creatives who carve their own path and don't play by the rules.
I'm here to help you get focused, take action, and set your brand ablaze. Click here to learn more!