I watched a fab talk by vulnerability researcher and author Brene Brown recently called Why Your Critics Aren’t the Ones Who Count.
It resonated massively with me and my favourite quote is:
“If you’re not in the arena also getting your arse kicked, I’m not interested in your feedback.”
Brene was talking to a group of creatives (designers) and encouraging them to move past their fear to put their work out. There’s only one thing guaranteed, she said: That you’ll get your arse kicked. She then proceeded to describe some of the cruel and unkind comments that internet trolls had left on her famous and widely shared Ted talks.
I could relate because I’ve received my fair share of these on articles and particularly opinion pieces that I’ve written for mainstream media over the years.
Yet, as Brene, reminded the audience: we can’t let this stop us from sharing our message – whether we deliver it in the form of art, activism or through our socially conscious businesses.
If we are truly ‘on purpose’, then every fibre of our being calls us to share our gifts with the world. I know that may sound a bit fluffy, but what’s the point of being in business if you don’t want to do this?
Fear, as Brene said, inspires us to play small. We allow our critics – external and inner ones – to hold us back in a misguided attempt to keep us safe.
I’m as guilty of it as the next person. I’ve run in the opposite direction when big opportunities have come my way. But more recently, I’ve learned to recognise fear for what it is – and to put in place practical strategies to help me move beyond it.
“I’m not ready for the media yet.”
I hear this a lot when I’m out and about at events for business owners and entrepreneurs. They love the idea of growing their business (fast) by being featured in the media and they enjoy the fantasy. But when it comes to taking a step to making it happen, they panic and tell me they’re not ready.
So, in this week’s episode of Katrina Fox TV, I answer the question: How do I know when I’m ready for media coverage?’
Let me know what you think – and if you have any questions for me, pop them in the comments section and I’ll aim to answer them in upcoming blogs or TV episodes.
I’ll leave you with this cool quote by Theodore Roosevelt who Brene quoted in her talk (the feminist in me has taken the liberty of ‘updating’ the pronoun to make it more inclusive, hehe!):
It is not the critic who counts; not the [wo]man who points out how the strong [wo]man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the [wo]man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends him[/her]self in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if [s/]he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his/her place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.”