In some ways, I am still searching for my true niche in writing. I am passionate about grace, about identity, calling, and the power of story in our lives. Encouragement, social media, creativity and writing are also big passions for me, which I write about from time to time.
In the past, and the recent present, I’ve been hugely frustrated by this. I watched friends find their voice and niche and kept getting frustrated at my inability to find mine despite numerous failed attempts.
As a friend pointed out, when you’re someone who wants to make a difference, when you’re not sure how to do this, it can be frustrating.
At my office, there are several people who have been working for the company for years. Those who have been at the same pay grade, doing the same job, at the same level, for 30 years. And it may be this was the furthest they could get with their abilities. But often it’s because they either haven’t found their true calling, lost confidence they can make a difference in the world and just want some form of security, or like where they are so much they never want to leave.
Do you know people like this?
And are you in danger of living like this?
In the world of writing, this happens when someone doesn’t bother to try writing a book, or explore different themes on their blog in order to find the niche, the area they can truly impact others lives the most. Instead they stay where they are, they don’t push the door and try different things, and they don’t write a book, because they are terrified of failure, lack confidence and don’t want to leave their comfort zone.
Until a few days ago, this has slowly, subtly, become my blog story too. I thought I was confined to where I was with no room to explore, and I was actually content there.
But a friend of mine said something to me to me which changed this completely.
“Don’t be afraid to try different things. See this as a time of experimentation and don’t worry about the outcome”
It was like the fog clearing on a cloudy day. The waves parted. Suddenly I saw clearly.
I’d been bound by the self-imposed boundaries on subject matter and even format. I’d stopped experimenting. I’d got content where I was and just got settled into my comfort zone without moving forward. I’d limited my own potential.
And it was time to stop.
The next question to ask was simply what I was going to do next. Stopping what I was doing was one thing. But needed to begin something new as well.
So I’ve decided to spend the next few months experimenting on this blog. To stop limiting myself and step out. I’m going to do this by blogging about a few different subjects. All the subjects I’m passionate about – story, identity, calling, grace, creativity, writing and social media. And maybe a couple of others too.
I’m going to write honestly, vulnerably, and authentically, holding nothing back. Then see where it takes me. I don’t know what the outcome will be – but I do feel liberated by the freedom this will give me.
I might even try creating different types of content too – more visual work, more audio work, who knows? I have no idea as yet. But I’m going to stop limiting myself, and rule nothing out.
And in the process, I will discover something new about myself. I hope I’ll discover my niche. And I hope it will push me further towards realising my true potential.
So what can we take-away from this experience?
1) Keep Asking Yourself Whether You’re Reaching Your Potential
Be aware. Ask yourself how much you’re risking, and if you’re really achieving your potential. It’s when we step out when we grow and discover our true potential. Make sure you’re still stepping out.
2) Have Trusted Friends to Be Accountable
I was lucky to have a great friend who was willing to be honest with me, and point out where I needed to grow. Someone with wisdom, who was detached slightly from my story so could see it objectively, who believed in me and wanted me to succeed. And we all need these friends in order to grow.
3) Take Action
All these lessons meant nothing unless I took action. I needed to respond to my friends words and step out. And they will only have the desired effect if I do this in the coming weeks.
Because words must always be backed up by actions.
We can all make a difference in the world, whatever our chosen path. But to be change makers, we must be willing to sacrifice safety. (you can tweet that)
We all need to find our unique path, to find our own niche – which we can only do by being willing to experiment, willing to risk failure for the chance to change the world. And above all, by not limiting the possibilities of what we’re capable of.
Do you want to stay where you are for 30 years, and have stability but no progress? Or do you want to be a difference maker?
The choice is yours.
Questions For Reflection:
Are You Stuck In A Comfort Zone Without Even Realising It?
When Was The Last Time You Experimented & Sacrificed Safety?
What Would It Look Like For You To Make a Difference?
Let me know in the comments below!
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Picture: Online Source