Raise your hand if you’re…
- an introvert
- or an over-thinker
- or a perfectionist
Or all of the above. 🙂
Even having just one of these qualities makes it that much harder to get out there and promote your work.
But like we’ve said before, if you’re not putting yourself out there, no one will know what you’re doing and how to support your music.
Keep reading for our favorite tips for overcoming the fear of putting yourself out there.
5 Ways to Overcome the Fear of Putting Yourself Out There
If you tend to undershare or shy away from tooting your own horn (because you don’t want to be “that guy”) we invite you to flip the script and start to look at things differently.
Here are five mindsets you can adopt to get more confident and courageous about putting yourself out there.
1. Think of it as connecting, not promoting
Self-promotion has a bad wrap. When done wrong, it feels slimy and pushy. There are a few ways to get around this.
First, remind yourself that you’re connecting to other people and building relationships. Let go of the attachment to what’s in it for you. Instead, talk about your work and your projects as a jumping off point for getting to know others and allowing them to get to know you, whether in person or on social media. Share from a place of passion and enthusiasm; it will be contagious!
Also, be sure to balance out self-promotion with talking about things other than your music or performances. Open up about your passions, your stories, and your personal life.
And if it scares you to be more open about life outside of your career, our next tip will help.
2. Decide what you’ll share (and what you won’t)
The internet is a big place. So it’s easy to feel vulnerable — like you could potentially share too much or say things that you regret down the road.
It’s important to think about what you are and aren’t comfortable sharing in advance, and set boundaries around the topics that are off limits.
One of our favorite strategies is to only share stories that you wouldn’t mind seeing on the front page of a newspaper. Another good barometer is to share only the things that make you feel proud, and not those that make you feel embarrassed or ashamed.
3. Start small
Do off-the-cuff Snapchat posts intimidate you? Do Facebook Live videos feel like too much pressure? Start small!
Practice sharing bits and pieces of your story with people in person, and see what people respond to the most.
You can also experiment by writing an email to your list or publishing a blog post and sharing it with people you trust. The more you practice putting yourself out there, the easier it will be.
4. Call on your support system
If you’re about to do something really bold, tell your friends about it. Ask them to be there for the event itself (if you’re trying to start a Twitter chat, for example).
Or ask them to be there for you when it’s all over — either to celebrate your big win or to pick up your spirits if it didn’t go as planned. Knowing you have people in your corner can give you that extra boost of confidence.
And, when the time comes, to be there for them too.
5. Remember that “hard” doesn’t mean “wrong”
Just because putting yourself out there might feel hard, it doesn’t mean that you’re doing something wrong. It’s also not a sign that you’re not ready or that you’re not good at it. It just means it’s hard!
Remember that putting yourself out there can be challenging for everyone in the beginning, especially the introverts, overthinkers, and perfectionists.
So keep at it. Experiment with new ways of getting the word out about your music, manage your fears around putting yourself out there, and pay attention to what’s working for you (and do more of that!).
Before you know it, you’ll create a thriving community who truly cares about not only what you create but what you have to say. And with loyalty like that, you’re sure to go far.
Are You Holding Back?
Tell us, where are you playing small or hiding when it comes to putting yourself out there?
Which tip spoke to you the most?
When you’ve felt afraid of getting out there, what has helped you overcome your fear?
Leave a comment below.