What? There’s something words can’t do? Yes, thank goodness.
Every writer knows that the most profound aspects of life stretch the limits of language. That’s why we seek out those liminal, wordless spaces. And, because we’re a bit mad, we then return to the desk and try to prove that it’s possible to express the inexpressible.
Regular Voyages To the Space Beyond Words
Four weekends a year I escape my responsibilities as mother, wife, and entrepreneur and I attend class at the Sacred Center Mystery School - my home for personal and spiritual development work. This is where my teacher and mentor first introduced “the goal is to become sovereign in your own reality” - the phrase that has launched my personal and professional quest for sovereignty.
What I absorb at the Sacred Center is folded into what I think Eleanor Roosevelt would call my “philosophy.” I receive teachings that both precede and supercede words. The alchemical process of turning experience into language begins when I get home and the irresistible urge to write takes over.
We explored “choice” during this latest class. I saw my life as a series of spirals and arcs rather than right or left turns. In countless instances from meeting my husband to quitting my job and becoming an entrepreneur, it seemed like life had mostly happened to me.
There was a healing around this for me - now I'm ready to recognize all of the ways "I have a choice" echoes through each day.
After all, I choose every word I write (when autocorrect doesn’t think it’s smarter than me, at least!).
How much will you reveal? You always get to make that choice
As part of the Message Discovery and Development Process, a client who wrote her creative entrepreneur’s autobiography went deep into what inspired her to become a healer. She spent a lot of time considering and organizing the story, and was very honest in the telling, but there was a resistance when we discussed what she’d written.
Beyond a doubt, getting to the core of her “why” to understand the origins of the work was worthwhile. And yet, details of her personal trauma and descriptions of the bumps on her road to success clearly weren’t to be included in the story she’d tell on her About page.
It felt too personal. Her professional identity was not enhanced with that level of vulnerability - at least not on this particular page of her website. Plus, the story was long and people were coming to the website for her healing skills, not because they were interested in reading a spiritual memoir.
And so, a three thousand word journey was distilled to three paragraphs and together we decided that she’d focus on what she had learned from her journey: her philosophy of connection and healing.
5 Choices You Can Make Every Time You Write a Post
No one is making you blog for your business or forcing you to write guest posts to boost your visibility. You’re dedicating yourself to a writing practice because you know writing matters to your business.
Once you’ve made the choice to write, there are so many more empowering choices you get to make:
- The voice: The basic rule, especially when writing for the web, is “write like you talk.” That’s good advice, but you certainly use a different tone and vocabulary when you’re dishing with girlfriends than when you’re presenting to the school board.Will you be nurturing, professional, something of a smart ass, or somewhere in between?
- The form: They say people love list posts, and it’s true that the average internet reader likes to scan through logically organized information. But don’t just shape your writing to fit the bloggers’ advice - write to support your story and the needs of your specific audience.
Will you break out the old reliable “5 ways to…” or tell a story or present case studies? You always have the option of combining forms (just like this post does).
- The reason for writing: You’re writing because you see each blog post as an opportunity to educate, entertain, or inspire. You’re also writing a post to get the reader to do something that betters her life and connects her more deeply to what your brand has to offer. The post needs a clear call to action or CTA. Direct your post to a final “ask.”
Will you choose to promote a product or program in the last line? Maybe you just want to ask the reader to subscribe to your email list (after all, that is where most sales are eventually made).
- The details: As described the healer involved in the Message Discovery Process realized, not every detail of the story has to make it into the post. Some details may be for your eyes only while others may be the seeds of future articles.Once you’ve written the first draft, try to leave it alone for a few days or at least few hours. When you come back, what extraneous details can you cut and what key ideas can you bring to the fore?
- The visuals: As you write, you have the opportunity to choose metaphors that help your reader picture what you’re talking about. Because images are so important to blog posts, you also get to choose the photos and illustrations that will really prove your point (and make the whole blog very “pinnable” and easy to share on social media). How will you make the blog post cohesive - a selection of photos from the same location, a series of related quotes, a handful of drawings that have the same vibe?
I chose to make this a post about expanded consciousness and a healer’s journey into self-awareness and a relevant about page, so I can’t really switch tones and conclude with “you can pick your friends, you can pick your nose, but you can pick your friend’s nose.”
But then, I am still feeling invigorated by the power of choice and I can choose to ignore my own well meant advice!
For a weekly collection of inspiration and ideas for the creative entrepreneur, subscribe to the Sovereign Standard where it’s all about setting your own standards (and breaking your own rules as you see fit).