Two days ago I received the news I had won the CREA GLOBAL Award, presented to the writers around the world by Brainz Magazine for making an impact in the world with their work.
I read the email once, twice and then a few more times before the news sunk in.
And then I had to process the emotions that came with winning it.
The pressure I felt to prove I was worthy of it.
The feelings of not being successful enough to accept it.
The fear of being ‘found out’ because maybe I am not as successful as people believe I am.
You see, all the books I have written and published as a solo author, and with others, has created an expectation from others which I have felt I am not living up to.
Imposter Syndrome has been having a full on pity party over here in Latin America and I have been the guest of honour.
With highs one day, lows the next, reminders it is normal in the menopause, and being told to trust the process, by myself and others close to me, I have been on the rollercoaster ride of scaling my business.
There seems to be moments when I am flying by the seat of my pants, worrying how I am going to make everything work, to moments of immense highs as everything comes together at the final hour.
Combined with the hours of hustling like a badass, creating content and showing up for myself and others to drive my business to where I want it to go, I sometimes find myself considering getting a job in a coffee shop and hiding away in a cabin somewhere in the woods away from everyone.
Yep, I’m at that phase of a business step change.
The one where we say goodbye with gratitude to the end of the current chapter of our entrepreneurial lives ready to open up the next chapter.
Closing the door on any part of our life, one which was once a dream and is now a reality, stepping into the next stage of life is not as easy as some like to think it is.
With a lot going on behind the scenes we have to look at how we are going to cope with the expanded bandwidth needed.
People want to work with us, but unable – or unwilling – to make the investment, and our coaches telling us our prices are not high enough for the expertise and wisdom we now have, and the growth we need to create in our teams and systems.
With so many moving parts, step changes and scaling a business can be confusing, exhausting and unforgiving, especially with a recession looming.
Do we reduce our prices? Or do we remain firm with them, honouring ourselves and the turbulent times we have already passed through?
Others will look in and say we are doing too much and need to slow down, but they do not see the strategy, the elements behind the scenes which make the ‘amount we are doing’ easy to deliver on.
Then there are those who are looking to grow their business sales and jump on a call to “get to know us” under a pretence of some kind, when really they are simply wanting to sell to us or ask us to work for peanuts.
It creates a distrust of people and their intentions and makes me, and others like me, want to retreat away from everyone.
Winning this award from Brainz for my contribution to humanity through my writing made me face up to many things, including my own talent.
I may not write in a conversational style, or write about the easy to digest stuff at breakfast, but I have always known my writing is powerful.
I am powerful, so of course my writing is.
Being told my writing is all about me has made me re-evaluate my work, because even though I use my own experiences, my writing is never really about me, quite the opposite in fact.
My writing showcases the human condition, the twists and turns of life, and the situations I see unfolding around me as I travel the world.
Do I use myself as the example or how something has impacted me?
Absolutely I do, because to write about others wouldn’t be right in my view.
To state statistics and be generic, regurgitating more of the same old same old, just isn’t me.
And so to receive this award for my contribution has meant a lot to me.
Those who know me well, will know just how much. Those who don’t will continue to judge me, and other award winners from their own perspectives.
People will judge, comment, advice and critique no matter what we do, so we may as well show up as ourselves, right?
Even if being ourselves doesn’t make us popular, or able to cope with the unwanted popularity we face due to our success already gained.
Awards are an interesting part of life for us all. Those who strive for them, those who win them constantly, and those who can and will only dream of them.
The thing is though, in today’s world of keyboard warriors and people paying for awards, book reviews, and friends, winning an award has lost the prestige it once held.
Recently I saw a company celebrating their award success as ‘Publisher of the Year’. The thing is though they are not a publisher, and the award competition was something they had paid to enter.
If they are not a publisher, why did they win Publisher of the Year? And what does this say about the underhand tactics of marketing if paying for the award is the only way to win?
Then I see a publisher celebrating their success of publishing over 100 authors in less than 2 years. I know their books and know these authors wrote nothing more than a 9th grade homework assignment and the quality of the books published were okay at best.
Am I a snob when it comes to awards, books and publishing? Apparently so.
Do I have extremely high standards which I hold myself too? Yes, I do. My clients also get held to this high standard.
Are these expectations I have of myself causing me more worry and harm than goodness? Possibly, but I don’t think so.
Speaking with my youngest son just now, I mentioned that I didn’t feel deserving of the award as I haven’t achieved what I have set out to achieve yet.
He was smart enough to bring my attention to the word ‘yet’ at the end of the statement I had made.
I know I have a long way to go until I will feel like I have succeeded and achieved the success I want, and I know I will get there.
Those of us who strive for global impact and quality don’t cut corners, are probably a lot harder on ourselves than most ‘normal people’ would consider right, or healthy.
And whilst the ‘normal folks’ think people like myself should slow down, take a breath, and accept mediocrity – often to make themselves feel better – we know we can’t ignore that drive and relentless call to achieve more and more for ourselves and others.
Getting a job isn’t an option for me, because it will simply distracted from my own business and goals I have set out to achieve.
Whilst others look for a single job to pay their bills, I look for clients and people to collaborate on projects with.
The ‘no’ and the time it takes will often even themselves out, but the rewards and the accolades are vastly different.
This CREA GLOBAL Award from Brainz Magazine has confirmed for me I am on the right path for me.
And I am happy to not be one of the normal folks. I’m happier to be one of the weirdos in society who is relentless in my pursuit of success – however that looks for me.
I’m not for everyone, neither are you.
My fees for coaching and consulting are not for everyone, nor is your budget.
My books are for the discerning members of readers worldwide, those who wish to learn more about the world we live in.
And my fellow weirdos will always find me wherever I am, that’s the beauty of us all showing up as ourselves. We meet the people we are meant to meet and journey through life with.
And no, I won’t be serving coffee in a coffee shop anytime soon, drinking it whilst signing books, absolutely!
There’s work for me to do in this world, so I am going to get on with it, turning on my weirdo light of being a change maker and author activist so my future clients, collaborators and friends can find me.
Until the next time folks, I’m off to scale the ranks in the world of writing and publishing powerful books!
Ciao for now!