Finding your authentic centre is the core pillar in my 4-part framework for creating and growing an authentic online presence.
That’s because I’m a firm believer that before you can create content or launch offers that resonate with your ideal clients you’ve got to connect with you first. Most people start with getting to know their client’s wants, needs and inner desires and in most cases, that’s what conventional marketing coaches teach.
I get how this would feel like a logical place to start, but focusing on who the client is and what they want you to deliver before you know who you are can create substantial gaps between the kinds of people you want to serve and who you actually attract.
What I’ve realized is if you want to create a sustainable business—one that nourishes you both spiritually and financially—you must find your authentic centre which means aligning with you first. Unfortunately, most solopreneurs skip the self-growth and awareness part of their business planning session, which I get because I did it, too.
But here’s what’s at the heart of all of this—
I call this process, finding your authentic centre.
It means connecting with yourself before you can connect with your clients, collaborators, or write marketing plans that light you up.
Finding your authentic centre consists of three things:
01. Understanding your values so you can honour them in your life and business and attract kindred clients who align with them, too.
02. Clarifying your vision, so you have a clear line of sight for where you want to go and an easy, heart-aligned process for getting you there—joyfully.
03. Uncovering your philosophy and having an intimate understanding of what makes you different so you can leverage your individuality to attract your loyal fans. Hint: this is the key differentiator and what’ll make you stand out online.
Let’s explore them a little deeper.
01. Understanding your values
Everyone holds a unique set of values, and by learning and attuning to them, we can make decisions based on the things that bring us joy & fulfilment.
When you’re clear about your values and what matters to you most, you can:
- Create a work routine and practice that’s uplifting, aligns with your energy and the way you like to work
- Fuel your creativity and feel immense joy and freedom on your journey to growing an authentic online presence—not waiting until you reach your next milestone to be happy.
- Quickly discern which clients are a fit for your work and who isn’t (when you know this, you’ll create authentic content/offers/connections from this space and the perfect-fit clients will be drawn to you organically)
- Create offers that feel good on a heart and soul level — it’ll never feel like selling again
- Feel deeper levels of joy and authenticity in the work and service you provide (what a gift to your clients to truly love and respect what you do from a heart-centred place, not an egocentric one driven by status or money).
02. Clarifying your vision
When clarifying my vision, I like to have a ten, three and one-year vision. The longer-term vision is an image I hold in my mind to remind me of why what I’m doing is important and a reminder to keep going when things get challenging. The three to five-year vision is again, an image I hold in my mind to remind me of what actions and processes will be relevant at a high level.
The most crucial vision for me is the one year vision because it’s granular. It’s close enough in my future that I can outline actions, steps and processes to follow to help me achieve my goals and make my dream a reality.
Once I’m clear about my vision for the year I’ll narrow my focus by each quarter. Some people like to align their goals with the phases of the moon or the four seasons. Whatever method you choose, the important thing is to focus on the process you’ll follow, not the outcome, to help you realize your vision.
One of my favourite ways to clarify my vision is to sit back, relax and envision where I want to be one year from today. Once I get a clear image of what that looks like, I write down my vision as if it’s already happened. I’ve heard this referred to as the “as if” vision.
Once I write out my “as if” vision, I start writing out the goals and smaller actions I’ll need to take to bring my vision to life. I focus on the transformation I want to make by looking at where I am today and then visualize where I want to be and how I want my business and life to be different one year from now. Then I reflect back and ask myself:
- What did I have to change in my life to make my vision happen?
- What changes did I make in my daily routine?
- Who supported me throughout the year? Who did I connect with or ask for help?
- Who did I need to become to make this transformation?
My mentor, George Kao says that visualizing the outcome isn’t enough to reach your vision, instead, you must visualize the process. You must see yourself waking up each day and taking the specific action needed to make your goals happen. Thinking about it won’t bring you results.
03. Expressing your unique personality and perspective
Who you are and how you share your message with your audience is the biggest difference between you and someone in your niche or industry offering the same information or service. A lot of people struggle with delivering content because they fear they don’t have anything new to say or they believe they’re in a saturated market and think—how could I possibly tell my audience something they don’t already know?
The difference is they haven’t heard it from you.
I sound like a broken record when I speak of this because I think it’s critical and will help you create content and make offers that are in alignment with who you are and the resonant clients who need your work.
Most people ask, how do I know what type of content my audience wants me to create? Then they remain stuck caving to the pressure of trying to deliver content their audience wants.
What I propose is you give yourself permission to play and experiment with your content instead. Of course, asking your audience what they want is a great strategy if you’ve already got a following of true fans. However, if you don’t, then trust that when you share a heartfelt message that aligns with you and your higher self, the right-fit people will connect with it and stick around for more.
This is exactly how my business has been built and what’s led me to teach marketing strategies that are rooted in integrity and alignment of your true expression.
Start by sharing ideas, messages, and stories that you like to talk about. If they’re relevant to what your business is about even better. You can express any ideas you feel good sharing. Do that every day and it’s through that process you’ll develop a clear message and style.
As I look back on my business, my content and message have evolved. But I couldn’t do that by delivering content to my audience that didn’t resonate with me first. The more I shared, the more comfortable I became and the more clarity it brought.
What you’ll notice is that the people who resonate with you and your style will be drawn to you naturally, the ones who don’t will slowly fade away which is exactly what you want them to do.
The more authentic you can be in your online presence, the more solid your connection will be with the people who are truly the best fit for the work and service you provide.
Don’t waste your time on anything else.
In an ideal world, we’d all start with finding our authentic centre and connecting to ourselves before we worried about what types of clients we want to serve or how we should niche down, but realistically that’s not the case. When we launch our business, we’re excited, eager and our creative juices are flowing. We dive in and go for it.
The first indicator that you may be out of alignment is when your clients no longer reflect the people you want to work with. The offers you create don’t light you up or you’ve lost your spark. Another is when you feel blocked from creating content because you’re either worried your audience won’t like it or it’s already been done.
When any of those things happen, take a step back and return to the foundation of your business which is you. Take time to reflect on these important aspects so you can build a sustainable business that’s in alignment with who you are and the people you’ve been called to serve.