It doesn’t matter if you are starting a business, starting a blog or writing a book. You have to find your voice.
- What will you write about?
- What will be your worldview?
- How will you describe your business?
- How will your business be organized and run?
- What are your values & priorities?
- How will you view and balance your business and personal life?
This can be one of the most frustrating steps in starting a new venture. It is something I have struggled with for years and feel like I am finally just coming to understand and can run with.
For years I have felt there was a piece missing in my blogging attempts. Selah Reflections has stayed around the longest. I have written the most here and have started to find my tribe. Exciting, but still, I’m not quite there yet. I’m now working on honing the voice of my writing and the voice of my business.
The big question I have been asking for a long time is, “How do you find your voice”?
The best answer I have found has 3 basic steps:
- Write more
- Write some more
Get into the daily habit of writing. Jot down daily your ideas, dreams and goals. A daily writing habit can be an incredible tool and the rewards far more then you ever imagined.
But those steps probably sound trite… so lets dig a little deeper shall we?
Step 1: Explore
Read other bloggers.
- What draws you?
- What keeps you coming back for more?
- Is it the way they tell a story, the imagery that helps express their words?
Look at your Pinterst boards.
- What type of content do you pin the most?
- Do you find yourself pinning content over and over again from certain bloggers? Why?
I think it is also helpful here to start a list of all the things you would like to write about. Topics, ideas and even listing specific blog post titles, how many can you come up with? Have you ever heard a conversation or saw a quote that made you think “That would make a great blog post”? Great! Add it to the list.
Explore your Story Telling Type. Huh? Yeah, the title intrigued me too when I ran across this blog post last week. I highly encourage you to go and check it out: Story Bistro’s: 7 Basic Story Types and Why They Matter to Your Marketing
This post grabbed my attention, and when I took their assessment I found out that I am a Journey / Return type. Which totally made sense to me. When you read the blog post (and you are going to right??!) this last part will make more sense.
Another great resource is Thrive Your Tribe’s 5 Brand Sirens quiz. Through this quiz I found out that I am like Judy Garland in the Wizard of Oz – who also is on a Journey.
See the connection? Yep, journey.
Step 2: Try it On For Size
You learn by doing.
Now that you know a bit more about your style try it on for size. Start writing, dive deep into your style and push boundaries. Proof it out.
This step can feel like you are stepping into a strange and foreign land. It can also be liberating because you are starting and you are doing it.
Just know that starting is half the battle, the other half is to keep on going even when it is hard and frustrating.
And I don’t want to sugar coat it. For some people finding your voice is easy (just so you know, I’m jealous of you). For others like me, it is a hard fought battle. BUT! I can attest to the fact that if you stick with it, keep exploring, and keep trying you will get there. It is quite amazing to me and incredibly rewarding.
As you are trying – check out Jeff Goins idea of finding a world view. A unique way of honing your voice. I heard this presentation at the Pro Blogger World Domination Summit this past summer and it is an idea I refer back to on a regular basis. My worldview is “The Artist”, or maybe “The Journalist”, I’m not sure yet, I keep going back and forth.
Keep trying it on for size!
Bonus Resource. I HIGHLY recommend Jeff Goins’ Tribe Writers course. It is a writing course that I have learned so much from and the community he has build around it is amazing.
Step 3: Tweak What Doesn’t Work
The wonderful thing is – nothing is set in stone. As you grow, you will need to adapt and change. As you grow you will be able to bring your audience along with you.
I like that part, it means that for next 5 years I will not be stuck writing about the same thing over and over again. That would drive me insane!
Start where you are at, grow and adapt as you change and tweak what doesn’t work. Will you ever grow out of your story telling type or brand siren identity? I don’t know, I’m not that far along yet, but I have a feeling we won’t.
As you write and grow, pay attention to the feedback you are receiving from peers and from your tribe. Do they like it? Are they sharing your posts, are they asking for more?
Step 4: BONUS – Just Start
I can tell you one thing for sure, if you don’t start, you won’t find your voice. So get started!
With all that I have been learning, trying and exploring, you will be seeing a few changes here at Selah Reflections, I’m excited to share and grow with you.
When you read the resources mentioned above come back and let me know what you learned.
Marta Goertzen is an entrepreneur, writer and nature photographer. She daily explores the trails and beaches of the South Central Oregon Coast with her buddy Bailey. You can follow along on their adventures on Instagram. She is also the author of several books including her newest, “Choosing Gratitude: A Daily Quiet Time Journal”.