CHOG #24 - ARE YOU SELF-PROMOTING?
Boy, I am. I mean I have website with photos of myself, my favorite books, my favorite things, quotes that I like in certain books, and my opinions (Giggle Chogs) on a host of topics. I wrote a book, (self-promoting as always), Insert Giggle Giggle, Laughing Your Way through Raising Kids and Running a Business, which just became available this week on Amazon.com. I have a podcast on Spotify, Kay’s Gigglecast (self-promoting again), and finally, I promote ALL of the above in announcement posts on Instagram. Whew! That's a lot of promoting!
Why do I think anyone is interested in ANY of these things? I’m not really sure…. The very first chapter of my book is titled, “Why did I write this book and why are you reading it?” (insert giggle giggle). There’s really not a good answer to either of these questions, but I propose the answers are 1) because I was sort of bored and started writing down my thoughts and it just evolved into a book and 2) because every-day people (moms especially) may see a little of me and the things I wrote about in themselves and either giggle at it or maybe learn a little from all our mistakes…. Who knows? But self-promote it I did.
Further, I thought that everyone that knew me was going to promote me as well (insert giggle giggle)! It’s true. What I had in my mind was that I was going to write this book, publish a website, and produce a podcast, and everyone I knew was going to push “me” out to everyone they knew on their (maybe multiple) social media platforms as well as in their general daily conversation. This is what I thought. You know, “hey a friend of mine has a great podcast that I really enjoy – you should check it out!” And then, in a few days ask that person again, “Hey, have you had a chance to listen to my friend’s podcast and she now has a book out that you might find interesting...? HAHAHAHAHA! Who do I think I am – Kim Kardashian….C.S. Lewis….? Are my views on fashion, food, and world events so edifying that I think they would benefit anyone that is enlightened by them (insert giggle giggle!!!!!!!!!). I guess so (insert giggle giggle!!!!!). I mean, if this weren’t the case, why am I doing it? I already know my opinions. I already know what my favorite things are….
I have Giggle Chogs that discuss celebrities and the fixation we all have on their lives. I have a Giggle Chog on gossip that sort of dovetails with this fixation as well as the “why” we like to talk or know things about each other, true or untrue. I ask the question why in the world are we even remotely interested in some of these “housewives and families” that were a nobody basically before (maybe just rich) and what they have going in their private lives. I state that I am also a nobody, and if there was a camera following me around on a daily basis, it would as well be a great reality show on TV (insert giggle giggle) so high the drama and comedy is on some days (especially in the past 3-4 years, I’ll just leave it at that…..)
In a business sense, I used to tell my faculty at my preschool, if you are not making a point of telling the parents, in some way, about all the great things you did today with the students, then it’s like you didn’t even do it. Sounds self-promoting doesn’t it instead of just doing the right thing for the children, right? But what I was really trying to showcase, and the teachers understood this, was that we wanted the parents to know what was shaping their kids educational and social foundations. We wanted to earn their trust by our actions each day. We wanted them to realize why they were paying more for their child’s early education at my preschool than if they were going elsewhere. And finally, it was just fun to share all the great things their child was involved in while they were under our care. So, casual conversation at pick-up with the parents, photos posted on the door/wall/parent info board, or the daily and weekly emails of information that we received from the teachers to communicate to the parents, were several ways we were able to accomplish this self-promotion. It would be frustrating to me, after sending the weekly wrap-up of all the great things that went on in the classrooms, for it to come to my attention somehow about something incredibly fabulous that had gone on in a particular classroom that the teacher forgot to tell me in order for me to tell the parent in the email! But, they were just doing the great job that we all expected of them and to them, it was difficult to be as self-promoting as I wanted them to be…doing a fabulous job each day with all the small and big things they did throughout the week was just something they naturally did because they were a Fabulous Faculty.
I have never had a social platform of any sort until about 3 months ago. Both of my boys are shocked at my jumping into the social media fray and they have laughed (mostly) at me when they come into a room where I am like a zombie looking at Instagram. To further solidify my ignorance of anything technological, I bought a small writing pad to jot down all the make-up items I “had to” buy, the recipes to cook, the cleaning hacks, the fashion hacks and trends, and so on. When Hayden asked me one day what I was doing and I told him, he showed me how to SAVE posts ~ game changer!! Then of course, both boys have said “there goes our inheritance”….(insert giggle giggle!).
But in today’s world, I am not an anomaly in the self-promotion phenomenon. Everyone, well I guess my husband, Steve, is the absolute last hold out that I know of, is on some form of social media self-promoting themselves. Maybe everyone doesn’t look at it that way, but that’s what it is. I follow a very fashionable, every-day type lady, someone that I personally know but haven’t had a relationship with for probably 15 years, that I cannot believe her life. Posts of her almost every night at some fabulous restaurant, hosting some incredibly gorgeous event at her home, attending other gorgeous events at her friends’ homes, and stunning vacation photos. It’s exhausting for me and I’m not the one doing all this stuff (insert giggle giggle) but it's a treat to watch her story as well as so many others that I have become acquainted with through their Instagram posts, or maybe re-acquainted with people I know but haven't been in touch with for years.
I see young girls preening and posing to take a selfie of themselves while in random public places. No one is with them, they are just doing it themselves for posting on social media and not self-conscious at all that other people are seeing them. I would have died if someone had “caught” me doing something like that when I was a teenager or young adult. And the every-day adults on Instagram that set up a camera and dance in front of it in their kitchen and post that on a regular basis, I cringe thinking about doing something like that (insert giggle giggle!). However, for several years I told my family that it was on my bucket list to have some photos taken of me before I got really too old (not sure what that age would be now that I am “that age”…insert giggle giggle!) that included professional make up and a photographer. So, this past year for Christmas, Hayden gave me a package that included those two things that he put together from contacts he had when he worked at a luxury magazine in Atlanta. These two ladies did a fabulous job, and even though it was really tough to “model-pose” in front of them, they made it incredibly comfortable to do so. Thank you Kim and Sairie! I not only now have these photos for posterity, but I was able to use them for my book and for my website, so it was really a needed “business” expense and not really a “vain” purpose as it started out to be (insert giggle giggle!).
But self-promoting…I think most of us have found ourselves having to do that during our life, maybe several times. College applications, job interviews, and even relationships. There are many times that we need others to view us in a favorable light in order to gain something that is important to us. I have found a real joy in my retirement years to do the things that I describe in the first paragraph (book, website, and podcast) and even if it’s just for myself, it has served that purpose. But how great it would be for other people to be interested in what I am doing or thinking. Isn’t that sort of what we all desire….doing something interesting to others while being meaningful to ourselves, and maybe to others, in our lives?
Oh well, please visit my website, listen to my podcast, follow me on Instagram, buy my book, and share “all of me” with your friends ~ self-promoting as always…(insert giggle giggle!!!!!!!) and you know what – I’ll do the same for you!
Cheers to us!
Next Up ~ Are You Thankful? I have so much to be thankful for ~
Always remember to share yourself and insert a giggle giggle ~ Kay 😊