I’d be honest with you; I struggled to put myself out there for a long time. I constantly battled with the fears that kept me believing that my voice didn’t matter and that people would think I was stupid if I decided to share my passions. Plus, I also had the limiting belief that only experts needed to put themselves out there. So, as a result of this, I stayed hidden.
Then one day, after several months of hiding and burying my passions, I hit rock bottom.
At that time, I was going through a quarter-life crisis–and having no idea what I wanted to do with my life, I decided to start a blog.
Before Elley Ajoku became my main blog, I had an old blog where I shared details of my life journey and college experiences. It was a private blog with a meaningless name that I chose not to share publicly.
Though the blog has since been deleted and forgotten, it was an opportunity for me to try putting myself out there for the first time.
As a result of that blog, I learned to let go of the limiting belief that kept me from putting myself out there. Hence, I took the bold step of deleting the blog and started over with what you know now as Elley Ajoku.
With Elley Ajoku, I finally had the chance to be fully seen–The chance to be whom I was created to be, not hidden behind a name that didn’t fully represent me.
My decision to be fully seen is why you’re reading this blog post today, and if I had chosen to remain hidden, our paths would never have crossed.
I know what it’s like to repeatedly hear the voice of fear telling you not to put yourself out there. In fact, from my story, I listened to that voice several times before reaching my breaking point.
The good news is: You don’t have to be like me and hit rock bottom before deciding to put yourself out there. With the books I share today, you will receive the wisdom that helped me finally face my fears and put myself out there.
1. Show your work by Austin Kleon
The author of this book talks about the importance of showing your work and how it can benefit your success.
He writes, “Share what you love, and the people who love the same things will find you. “
Austin shows us the power of being relatable. If you put yourself out there, you not only invite the critics that you fear but create the opportunity to be discovered by people who also share similar interests. It is beneficial if you’re trying to make new friends or build new connections.
2. Steal like an artist by Austin Kleon
You’re probably thinking, “Another Austin Kleon book?”. But I promise he does not sponsor this post or know who I am.
It just turns out that his books are beneficial for the individual who struggles with imposter syndrome. Steal like an artist helps us understand that we do not need to be perfect or original to put ourselves out there–because the things we think are original have already been done before.
3. The subtle art of not giving a fuck by Mark Manson
It was one of the first books I ever read by Mark Manson. It was during a time when I kept putting the opinions of others above mine, and I needed a way to break free. This book helped me overcome that challenge, hence why I recommend it.
With this book, Mark Manson helps us understand the importance of choosing the proper “fucks” to give. Thus, if you struggle to put yourself out there because of what others will think of you, I highly recommend reading this book.
Have you read any of the books listed above? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below. Also, check out my bookshelf for more self-help recommendations