One great reason to write books is that having a published book – especially one that does well – is a great way to establish yourself as an expert. The same is true for blogging. Becoming a bestselling author or having a successful blog are worthy goals. But the question, especially for people of faith like myself, have to answer is how to balance writing success with humility.
The quest to balance writing success with humility is not easy. On one hand, you want to demonstrate your expertise through the blog posts and books you write. You want to win awards and end up with bestseller status. So how do you demonstrate expertise while still having a spirit of humility?
Start out by being honest. For example, as I’m writing this blog post, I’m realizing that I don’t totally have a handle on this topic myself. So I don’t consider myself to be an expert in knowing how to balance humility while demonstrating areas of expertise. But I’ll give you just a few thoughts on this topic, and then I’d love to hear your ideas as well.
Show Respect for Your Competitors
First of all, I think it’s important to show respect for people you may consider to be your competitors. Acknowledge their areas of strength. Go to them for advice. Refer people to them if they are better at something than you are.
That’s a hard thing to do because we all want to hold on to as much business as we can. It might seem foolish, to give some business away to a competitor, but in the long run, it may be beneficial.
As an example, on occasion, I format books for other authors. It’s something I enjoy, and it brings in extra income. But whenever someone comes to me and asks me to format a book, before agreeing to do so, I ask a few questions about their book. If I find that the book has a lot of images or that they desire a more complicated layout, then I refer them to someone else.
Could I potentially pull off formatting a more complex book? Maybe. But it just makes more sense, to be honest about my limitations and for the sake of everyone involved, refer them to one of my competitors.
Have the Attitude of a Learner
Always have an attitude of a learner. Although it’s not a good idea to continuously buy new courses without implementing what you learn in courses and books you’ve already purchased, it is a good idea to learn on an ongoing basis. If you have areas of weakness that you want to overcome, then make it a point to do your best to grow in those areas. Schedule time for learning and budget money for books and courses you may want to take.
Even if you’re very good at something, chances are there’s room for growth. This is definitely true in the area of content creation. It seems the rules for things like SEO, are always changing. It used to be popular to write really short blog posts. Now it said that blog post should be at least 400 words, or at the very least 300 words. It’s also true that certain things in book publishing used to work that no longer do.
Although it’s impossible to stay up with every little thing pertaining to writing and publishing, demonstrate an attitude of a learner by being honest about weaknesses and continually working to improve.
Celebrate the Success of Others
A third point that is an important aspect when it comes to how to balance writing success with humility is to celebrate the successes of others. Perhaps there’s a blog in your industry that is much more successful than your blog. Perhaps they get a lot more comments than you do. Or maybe another author consistently sells more books than you and outranks you on Amazon, regardless of what you do.
It’s understandable that you may feel a bit jealous when you see someone else’s success. But a humble person rejoices in the success of others. So even though it may be difficult, learn how to think the best of others and to celebrate their accomplishments.
There’s a verse in the Bible that speaks to this issue. Matthew 23:12 reads, “And whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted.” So you see, you really have nothing to lose by humbling yourself. In fact, if you want to have a successful blog or be a successful author, try humbling yourself and see what happens.
What are your thoughts on content creation and humility? Leave me a comment to let me know what you think about this subject.