WHAT DO YOU DO?
Even though I had long been an artist, I had a hard time owning that identity. New people would ask the inevitable “what do you do?” And I’d answer, “Well, umm, I paint.” Rather than saying I was a painter. Or if I got my guts up and said I was a painter, they would ask if I painted houses or, worst of all, they would say “oh, how nice.” And change the subject.
Have you ever had that happen? It trounced on my somewhat shaky confidence and made me feel invisible.
The more I thought about it, I came to realize that it was not the other person’s fault but really my own. I was the one who sounded unsure when they asked me what I did. It was similar to those people who raise the tone of their voices at the end of a sentence so you think they are asking a question instead of making a statement. I was tacitly asking them to confirm who I was, instead of my confidently telling them.
I came to realize that if I can’t tell people what I do, they will never see what I have to offer. And then my business will go nowhere.
If you’re having some of the same challenges as I was, here are some suggestions that will help you get past them.
◼︎Stand up and own who you are. When people ask what you do, make sure that you use the noun, the title, for your occupation. Rather than saying that you paint or give massages, let people know that you are a Painter or a Massage Therapist.
◼︎Devise an answer to that inevitable question of “what do you do?” Write it out, edit it, try it out on friends and family. Then practice it, time and again, until it feels perfectly natural to say. This way you will never be caught off guard again.
◼︎Tell people. Commit to telling 10 new people in the next two weeks about what you do or what your business is. It will do wonders for your confidence and you’ll be amazed at the positive response. You may even have a new opportunity open up for you!
Give these tips a try and let me know how they work out for you!
Let me know in a comment below.
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