If the “END OF THE DECADE LET’S REVIEW AND PLAN!!” messages are bumming you out

this picture PLEASES MY SOUL

This one might not apply to you. Or it might land right where you need it to.

You know everyone online at the moment is all, “OMG END OF A DECADE LET’S REVIEW THE LAST AND MAKE GOALS FOR THE NEXT!!!”?

If you love that stuff — as I have sometimes (and as my pile of completed yearcompasses will prove) — then awesome. Get on with your bad self.

But if, every time you read something like that, it makes your stomach tighten a little…

– maybe because you don’t think you have time to do that
– maybe because you don’t feel you achieved enough or have changed enough in ten years
– maybe because you’re currently in survival mode and have zero capacity for reflection or planning

…then I just want to remind you that…

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Quiet The Beast: How to deal with the part of your brain that says mean things to you

When I was growing up, I just thought certain things were truths. Being messy is bad. Not having cool clothes (a puffball skirt, say, or a stonewashed denim jacket and matching skirt) means people won’t like you. Being fat is my fault and something I should be ashamed of.

In my teens and early twenties, the list grew. Going too far with a boy makes you easy. Wanting to kiss a girl is weird and gross. Smoking makes you cool. Especially if you’re not drunk. Especially Benson and Hedges.

Twenty years, countless self-help books, hours of journalling and — thank you, privilege — a LOT of therapy taught me that those ideas were just that, ideas. They weren’t truths. When I believed them to be true about me, and used that to judge myself, it wasn’t because this was a reasonable conclusion to make. These thoughts were just the “inner critic.” One part of your brain that sometimes (often) lied.

But then, I faced a new problem: if I had figured this out, why was it still happening? If I’m so evolved, why do I keep saying such awful things to myself?

Since becoming a storytelling and speaker coach, I’ve spent a lot of time with brilliant, successful people, listening to their personal stories. One thing that I have come to understand is that having this voice that says mean things about you to you — a voice which I call your Beast — is part of the human experience. And that the trick is not to squash it, and not even to love it. But just to do what you can to reduce the volume and frequency with which it speaks to a level where you can start to tune it out. When you can, you have have a nicer life, and you can change more lives.

This year, I was asked to give the closing keynote at the penultimate (ever!) World Domination Summit. Instead of talking, as I usually do, about Storytelling or Sales Pages or even my I Don’t Have My iSht Together, Either project, I decided to write a brand new talk, where I shared the four steps that have helped me figure out how to master my Beast.

To watch it, click on “Read more” then on the big play button on the vid:

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How to: juggle work/home life; get readers to comment; decide if you should start a podcast – YYQ 10 Review

Written below is a ton of free advice in my latest blog — but in case you don’t have any of those particular questions yourself, Monday, April 6th you can ask me YOUR VERY OWN question! At 2pm ET. It’s Yes Yes Questions, my free, no-strings Live Advice Column.

you can read a review of the last one or listen to it below. The questions asked in that episode:

1. How do I juggle my work/home life, while being someone who works from home?
2. How do I pitch the media to find people who can actually afford my prices?
3. How do I get through all the material of online courses without losing my mind?
4. How do I cope when my clients stop working with me, but I know I could help them if they continued?
5. How do I get comfortable on video?
6. How do I get people to sign up for my list after I do a Facebook Live?
7. How do I get people to engage with my blogs and videos at all?
8. How do I scale as a service-based business if I have to be there to do the work?
9. Should I start a podcast?
10. That’s it. I just hate an un-even numbered list.

Questions 1. How do I juggle my work/ home life, while being someone who works from home?

I work from home and find it incredibly difficult to draw a line in my day and allow myself to enjoy my evenings and live in the moment. I am also working at nurturing a romantic relationship and maintaining friendships and family bonds and it is a lot to juggle. Any advice on this topic would be very much appreciated!

(i) Have set working times. In advance, tell yourself what time you are going to start work every day, what time you’ll end work and when you’ll have lunch.

(ii) Listen to

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Sometimes I shoot myself in the foot because it’s the right thing to do: A Tragedy by YYM

Standing in the wings, I looked out at the crowd and felt a rush going from my size 2, Mary Jane shoes, all the way up to the pony tail my mum had done for me that morning.

I was eight years old, and about to have my moment.

It was my brownie group’s Christmas show. I was part of an ensemble piece — but knew everyone would be looking mostly at me. We were going to sing a song called Tails.

Tails Tails Tails, you can swing them high and low! You can wrap them ’round your middle, you can trail them in the snow!

It’s testament to…

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Why are you so interesting, Marsha, and I’m so boring?

Have you ever thought that?

Maybe not about me, but about someone else you follow online? Someone who writes newsletters or Facebook posts that you always read. Someone who, every week, seems to be doing something cool and even if you don’t necessarily wish you were them, you wish you could hang out with them. You feel like they get you.

(Maybe you’ve even considered buying from them just to get a bit closer…)

Want to know how they do that? Want to know how YOU could?

By telling your stories.

But…what if nothing that exciting has ever happened to you? What if you don’t have any stories?

Then, you’re screwed. Give up now.

Obviously, I’m kidding.

The wonderful thing about stories is…

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How to stand out when everyone else is selling, too

(AKA “What is it about crying in the bath that’s so exquisitely painful?”)

I sat at my desk, finger hovering over my mouse and feeling sick.
In the words of my friend Holly G, I used to sell my services like I was trying to sell drugs in a back alley. Back in my first year of business, I’d whisper what was on offer once, then never mention it again. In case you’re wondering, I did not have a steady stream of customers.

But, after some tough love from my sales coach (Kendrick Shope), here I was, about to send an email to my list, where I was openly — in my mind, aggressively — asking for the sale. I was terrified. I had started with a story, because I always start things with a story. But then I had very clearly spelled out why the person reading should hire me. I felt so pushy.

Frowning at the screen, I was totally convinced that, within minutes, all 200 people on my mailing list would unsubscribe. Perhaps some of them might appear outside my house with picket signs and tomatoes to throw. I took a deep breath and…

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How to make a good first impression, how to sell the thing you’re good at, how to make friends in a new city — YYQ 8 Review!

In this episode of Yes Yes Questions, I answered these:

How do I make a good first impression?
Is it normal to fall behind in an online course?
How do I get a big-shot to send me referrals?
How do I sell the thing I’m good at?
How do I make friends in a new city?
Is asking for help at work is a sign of weakness?

Want to know what I said? Including, for the first question, one of my FAVOURITE first-impression hacks (that involves just staring at something for a while)?

Read precise answers below, or listen here:…
Here are shorter, written versions of my answers:

1. INTERVIEW TIPS:
Q: “I’m going to meet the people in charge at a company where I’ve been recommended for a role. I’ve never done a role like the one advertised, but I really do feel that I would rock it! Any words of advice for a fantastic first impression??”

Research the company as much as possible. Go in there knowing everything you can about them, so that (i) you can…

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How to: figure out your niche, overcome disappointment, and get clients via your friends without feeling gross (Yes Yes Questions 7 Review!)

While I think investing money in coaching is essential, I am also a product of the Soviet Union.

This means I was brought up by parents (and grandparents, and aunties, and uncles) who love FREE STUFF. Sometimes, that means speed-clearing the toiletries in a hotel bathroom (and, let’s be honest, from an unattended housekeeping cart) like a one person plague of miniature shampoo bottle-loving locusts. And sometimes, that means seeing where you can get a free version of services that other people pay for…

In the spirit of this, once a month, I run a free call called Yes Yes Questions. Part-Free Business coaching, part-Live Advice Column, it’s an hour where you get to ask me ANYTHING YOU LIKE, without the usual price tag that comes with my services. And the next one is next Monday, April 6th! Want to be there? Pop your details in on this blog. And to whet** your appetite — here’s the recording from last time, and here is an overview of most of the questions asked then and the answer I gave! In this episode, I answered these Q’s:

1. How do you know if your niche is niche enough?
2. How did you become an entrepreneur? What led you to that path and how did you go about learning how to be one?
3. How do you fake your niche if you feel like you can help EVERYONE?
4. Howwwwwww do I ask my friends and family to help me spread the word about my business? The idea of doing that sounds AWFUL.
5. Any advice on keeping up positive momentum when you get a setback?
I just found out an hour ago I did not get a significant consulting gig that I really wanted (and had received inside information that I would be hired…). Ugh… I just want to hide under a blanket for the rest of the day.
6. Is there a place where speakers hang out or go to? I really wanna photograph more speakers, as well as BIG speaking events.
7. I want to speak at conferences! How do you stand out when applying to do this?

Want to know what I said? Click below to read more!

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A sales page (and conversation) tip that’ll make ideal clients DESPERATE to work with you

A lot of us feel GROSS about writing sales pages or having sales conversations. Like we’re trying to force our stuff on people.

And when we’re then told to include your ideal clients pain points? Forget it! So pushy!

Except…. what if talking about their pain points actually helped them?

What if including pain points gave your dream clients the thing they crave most in the entire world — EVEN IF THEY NEVER BUY FROM YOU?

When done right, this is possible. And in this video, I show you how!

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How to find stories and decide which ones you should tell — an intro to BWSS, a new training series by MEEEE!

This is going to be my most comprehensive storytelling training — and my most scrappy.

A couple of weeks ago, fired up to work but in charge of a baby who doesn’t like me being on the computer (unless she’s allowed to go all salcKjiefwijoewfiojefwijoefw on the keys herself), I came up with a solution:

To start making audio training while out walking with her on my back. I made this decision, then 5 mins later…

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