Why Is It So Hard to Market and Sell Yourself?Featured

riannah's profile thumbnail
Thank you for sharing your story, Heather. I can only make a guess as to why it’s so hard for anyone to sell themselves, but I think you’ve smashed it out of the park. You frame your successes in light of your personality and interests, and that makes you very authentic and sincere.I hope you know you’re a beautiful storyteller.I think learning to sell yourself starts with learning to tell stories. I find it extremely difficult. In Australia’s work culture, ‘Tall Poppy Syndrome’ is rife (cut down the tall Poppy’s). We’re all better off for openness and honesty. Thank you.- A fellow former rower, although not quite to your ability level
HeatherSawtelle's profile thumbnail
Thank you Riannah for your support! My goal is to be more open and wholistic throughout my life and sharing my whole self rather than compartmentalizing what I share with each "part" of my life. Your encouragement is much appreciated and I wish you all the best!
alexcooley's profile thumbnail
Echo this insight @riannah — sharing our stories is how we as humans understand and make meaning of our experiences (and learn through others as @HeatherSawtelle so beautifully modeled). Why is it so hard to share our stories... sometimes we just don’t have a handle on how to frame them or what all the things that have happened to us mean and we DEFINITELY don’t understand how they benefit those that hear them. Instead we worry about the people who will judge us for sharing. I hope you receive a lot of great feedback on this! Keep up the “self promotion,” you’re good at it!
HeatherSawtelle's profile thumbnail
So true! Putting your feelings into words, particularly when fear has enforced a habit of hiding them is not easy! Thank you Alex, I really appreciate your encouragement and support!
MandyVarley's profile thumbnail
I loved reading your story, Heather! Thank you for sharing. When you only ever see people succeed around you and you are hustling to make it, it makes you feel like you don't belong or are doing it wrong. I had a similar experience of telling a class I was teaching about finishing my MBA, moving to London and working at a chronically closing down Christmas store while I looked for work. To me it was embarrassing that I didn't make it right away but my students thanked me for sharing - I had no idea the impact being that vulnerable could have. Thank you again for sharing your story! It means a lot!
HeatherSawtelle's profile thumbnail
Yes!- "I must be doing it wrong" certainly comes up for me. It' seems we have lots of compassion for others but don't extend it to ourselves enough. Instead of sharing the struggles that make us who we are we hide them and act like everything is fine. In reality sharing our journey's ups and downs connects us much more. Thank you for your support and sharing a bit of your story too!
Annalouisewestern's profile thumbnail
I can so relate to this! Thank you for sharing. I think the fear of feeling like you're bragging or trying to foster pity really nails it for me as to why I find it hard to share my own story. But you're right that ultimately to be a leader, people need to know you, and sharing yourself is a part of that. It's not about trying to seek praise or validation, but to share and commiserate with others. To connect. So I'm really excited to have just found this platform where I can feel able to openly share and connect to other women who are doing hard things, pushing themselves past their comfort zones, faltering and succeeding in equal parts. It feels very liberating to just be able to talk about it openly.
Erayna's profile thumbnail
Thank you for sharing your story! I am going through a similar transition but I know that I am still holding back. I think I am consistently battling what I have achieved vs. the work yet to be done. I realized that the faster I own who I am, the more confident I feel in sharing. Did you have anything like that in your process?
HeatherSawtelle's profile thumbnail
Hi Erayna,I think everyone has the days they feel invincible and like you can take on the world and others that make you feel the exact opposite and left wondering "What the bleep am I doing?". I knew something was holding me back and I talked to a coach about it who helped me define where I wanted to focus. It took longer to unravel the strings into a coherent message that I could share. The publicly sharing part was scary to say the least but I felt it was a necessary part of my work. Now that it is out, it feels really good to be so truthful with the "world" and be clear with myself. Even the camaraderie of comments here as well as off line feedback from my network has been very supportive, given me more to think about and has contributed to my self confidence. Happy to talk more and I'm cheering you on!!!
Erayna's profile thumbnail
Omg, I'm in a similar place. My coach also highlighted a few things for me that caused me to be a little bolder. I following your example, I recently shared about my burnout and short term disability leave experience. I sat on this since September and realized that I was dealing with the shame that I am trying encourage other to shake. Thank you for sharing and for being a great example! Here is the link to my article. If you have a few mins, I'd love to hear any feedback that you have. Writing is therapeutic to me so I'm going to start doing it more.bit.ly/2P5PSWW
HeatherSawtelle's profile thumbnail
Hi Erayna,You've written an incredible story. Thank you for sharing it!It made me think deeply about how to put policies in place and create a culture in my company where employees are encouraged to take care of themselves and utilize their benefits. Everyone wants their coworker to use sick days when they have the flu so it should be the same with your mental wellbeing. This is some of my fav actionable advice from your article:"Take a second to reflect on your last 30 days. Is the pace of work & life sustainable for the next 3 months straight? If you answer no, congratulations on recognizing there may be an issue looming. You can start by taking smaller, more regular breaks."Congratulations on your upcoming Hooky Spa& Lounge! I love that you created an No-Working space for hustlers to recharge.
Erayna's profile thumbnail
Thanks for checking it out! I like that perspective. It's easy to think about catching a cold but it's rare to realize that burnout can make ppl toxic.
ChristyShannon's profile thumbnail
Heather, thank you so much for sharing this post. It's a beautiful articulation of something that I think so many of us struggle with. Personally, I am challenged by this and find myself becoming less and less able to confidently define my own success and achievements (and describe the path that helped me get there). Sometimes, I will hear my husband describe my background to someone, and I think to myself, "why can't I say it as plainly and confidently as that!" I realize it's something that is holding me back from future growth, and I am eager to find a solution to overcome it. You mentioned you worked with a coach. Would you mind sharing how you found this coach and if this coach had any particular focus? Thank you for sharing your experience with us!
HeatherSawtelle's profile thumbnail
Hi Christy,Your bio on Elpha is amazing and I think you should say that when you introduce yourself!!! Your awesome and the people you meet want to know upfront so they can maximize their interaction with you. I was introduced to the coach through https://www.letsguild.com/ I've really enjoyed all the 1 to 1 introductions they have made and Anne Klint (the coach) was one of those matches. It was a very serendipitous meeting. I was ready to do the work and Anne got right to the heart of it in 2 meetings.With her permission here is her website: https://www.annemklint.com/ I think there are lots of professional coaches on Elpha you can connect with as well. I'm glad my story spoke to you and I wish you all the best!
ChristyShannon's profile thumbnail
Thank you for the kind encouragement and for sharing Gild and Anne's information. I really appreciate it. They both look like amazing resources.
AnnaShen's profile thumbnail
I love it! What an inspiration....