I’m in the bath.
Soaking in the sweet scent of a candle, drowning in epsom salts for my weary danced-out limbs and scrolling through my phone. Because balance.
Really, I’m trying to catch up on anything I possibly missed at last night’s hens party. I wasn’t drunk by any means – in fact, I was that stone-cold giraffe lurking on the dancefloor aiming feminism-charged laser beams at the preying eyes of below-par men (I’m sure they’re lovely, really, but no. Just no.) But it was a hen’s party and there’s gossip to catch up on.
As you do, I’m scrolling through Facebook on my phone in the bath on a Sunday afternoon.
Something catches my eye: someone asking a business-related question in a business-related group.
Somehow this is far more enticing than hen party gossip. I’m getting old ok? The glory days are behind me. Says the 28 year old. Don’t judge.
Anyway, I start reading this thread.
The gist is this:
Lady A has a question. Lady B relays advice from someone who is evidently very good and very smart on this topic. Lady C is shocked by answer. Lady A is too. Lady B understands and says ‘I know right, but you can play by your own rules!’. Lady A and Lady C like this. Lady Boss, the queen of the FB group, keeps it calm and gives an answer to make everyone happy – you know, ‘oh that’s her advice but here’s mine but hey, go by your own rules’.
Go by your own damn rules.
This quote is becoming cliche so damn fast that it’s starting to make me feel the wine from last night gurgle in my stomach.
Rules are made to be broken. Trailblazers break the status quo. Game changers do the impossible. And that’s how society moves forward. I like this. We all like this.
But let’s bring it down a (few) levels. To the solopreneur level. The personal level. The level where you are chasing your big bold idea and turning it into a big bold business.
Where is the line?
When is it ‘breaking rules’ and when is it simply an excuse to not do the work you need to do?
Here’s what I’m seeing happening. We’re reading, watching, listening and absorbing information from people who clearly know what they’re talking about. But then we’re double checking that with people who clearly have no damn clue what they’re talking about.
Why the fuck are we doing that?
What purpose does it serve?
My theory is that we’re trying to talk ourselves out of doing the damn work that will generate the actual results we want.
I can see you lurking fear-o-success, you sneaky beast.
Yes, you need to pick and choose what works for you.
But you actually have to experiment and get dirty in some trial-and-error fun to see if the evidence-based practices work for you.
Yes, you should pave your own path and do things a little differently to stand out.
But it doesn’t mean you have to completely shun every piece of this-actually-works advice and try it your own way. Or just take a snippet here and a snippet there. You know, whatever feels right.* Because dah-ling, discomfort isn’t always a bad thing.
*I’m going to talk to you about this later. Over wine.
There’s some really solid advice on how you can stand out differently. Try it sometime.
No seriously. Try it.
Learn it. Then apply exactly what you learned.
Implement it so hard that you’re drowning in real-life-honest-as-f feedback and stats.
And then decide – with evidence – if it works for you or not.
Maybe, just maybe, if we followed a few ‘rules’ we might start seeing the results we actually want. And wouldn’t that be a freakin’ dream?