Why You Should Make Yourself Uncomfortable

Text from my newsletter dated 10th January.

Sometimes we get out of our comfort zones by choice, and sometimes we are forced out by circumstances.

Back in 2001 the company I was employed by went bust, owing me about half a year’s pay – that put me way outside my comfort zone, and not by choice!

I was 8 months away from qualifying for my Hong Kong residency, so I decided to stay and qualify.

Leaving would have been the easy option because this has always been one of the most expensive places in the world to live – especially when you have no income, you’re owed a big chunk of change and there’s no social safety net.

To add to my run of luck, I became victim to a boiler room scam.

Talk about being outside my comfort zone!

It was a tough 8 months, but I got through it, qualified and earned my residency. And that experience taught me that I can deal with stuff, when it happens.

(It was also probably the cause of my grey hair!).

Today, Hong Kong is going through major changes, against its will. The declining economy in China raises the risk that those in power will try to use Hong Kong and Taiwan as distractions from their internal problems.

It’s worrying to think what might happen.

But thanks to getting through that time in 2001 and 2002, I know that I can deal with whatever comes up.

I learnt and grew from that experience.

Whatever you’re facing in your business, I urge you to be bold. Get out of your comfort zone, do stuff that you instinctively think is too ‘out there’.

Whether it works or not, you will learn and grow. And even if it doesn’t work, you will feel liberated and emboldened to keep trying new things.

Plus, the chances are good that it will work.

This week’s links

I’ve covered getting out of your comfort zone with your blog (a powerful tool in your content marketing mix), a look at SMS marketing, a look at small business marketing trends for 2022, and a link to a content planning guide.

Add new dimensions to your blog

Blogging is the cornerstone of content marketing, but it’s easy to stay within your comfort zone when you post. That makes your blog dull, and pretty much useless as a promotion channel.

Darren Rowse sets out 11 tips that will help to keep your blog fresh, interesting and increasingly effective as a promotion channel:

Eliminate your blog’s echo chamber

10 common SMS marketing mistakes and how to avoid them

Not using SMS marketing? With 90% of people opening mobile messages within 90 seconds, it’s something you should seriously consider.

Avoiding these 10 mistakes, and what to do instead, will improve the effectiveness of your SMS campaigns. As a bonus, these tips apply equally to email marketing.

10 SMS marketing mistakes

Small business marketing trends for 2022

John Jantsch reviews his 2021 marketing trend forecasts from a year ago, and gives his thoughts for 2022.

Great suggestions for marketing your small business, along with tips on how to up your marketing game in the year ahead:

Small business marketing trends for 2022

Twitter’s 2022 strategic tweet planning guide

Content marketing works way better when you follow a plan.

This strategic planning guide from Twitter will help bring cohesion, purpose and effectiveness to your content marketing efforts:

Twitter’s 2022 tweet planning guide

Useful resources:

This is a new section where I’ll add links to smart people and useful resources that I come across each week.

There are lots of well-known names in the online marketing space out there, but many are trading on reputation, offering out-dated information. They won’t show up here.

Cool (and smart) people and businesses:

Worth following for smart, current and insightful tips on growing your business:

@randfish

@jspector

@jonathanstark

Worth bookmarking:

Useful news and reference points for small or one-person businesses:

Rescue plan for small businesses in New York state

Tax advice for small businesses

Fun flashback

Prince performing ‘The Bird’ at The Los Angeles Forum on April 28th, 2011:

Join us

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4 current, detailed business growth tips each week:

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Cheers,

Martin Malden

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