Putting yourself out there

Is it as terrible as we think?

I have been a lot more active on social media lately. Like, a lot more. With the help of my utterly fabulous social media manager, Sophie, I have been able to *put myself out there*. A thought I previously found horrifying. Why? Because the internet is a weird, wonderful and totally terrifying place, especially for women.

People are subject to scrutiny and a feedback cycle that we’re simply not wired for. And while I obviously don’t have a following remotely akin to the goddess Taylor Swift or Queen Bey (one day!) there’s always a part of me that worries putting my face ‘out there’ will lead to criticism. Will I say the wrong thing? Will I look weird? Is my outfit terrible? 

You’d never dream of shouting such things to a person in the street, but the people that would go out of their way to tell me such things are ones who’ve – to paraphrase an excellent tweet – gotten used to expressing an opinion without being punched in the face.

In my job, I often tell myself that no news is good news. Often I write (superb) copy and I might not know where it gets used or ultimately what happens to it. But if I fucked it up, clients are usually pretty quick to tell me.  There’s always a moment where I get a notification and I panic. What if they’re just here to tell me I fucked up? 

The funny thing is, I have done exactly that. I’ve posted typos, used the wrong words or maybe didn’t phrase something in the exact, perfect way you ‘should’. But I’ve kept coming back because, really, who fucking cares? 

We’re all doing our best. We’re using these social tools to make a connection in the best way we know how. We’re all learning. So, let’s just keep doing that. If we only decided to post on Instagram or send an email when it was utterly, beautifully perfect, let’s face it, it just wouldn’t happen. So I’m going to stop getting in my own way from now on. How about you?