Transcript: How I Overcame My Fear of Getting Personal on Social Media

June 14, 2022

AMY PORTERFIELD: “I feel that the more I share my personal life on social media, the more real I feel on social media, meaning that if I only share the wins and I only share the moments that are super curated, that you are not seeing all of me, and then I don't feel authentic, and it doesn't feel good to get on social media.” 

INTRO: I’m Amy Porterfield, ex-corporate girl turned CEO of a multi-seven-figure business. But it wasn't all that long ago that I lacked the confidence, the budget, and the time to focus on growing my small-but-mighty business. Fast forward past many failed attempts and lessons learned, and you'll see the business I have today, one that changes lives and gives me more freedom than I ever thought possible, one that used to only exist as a daydream. I created the Online Marketing Made Easy podcast to give you simple, actionable, step-by-step strategies to help you do the same. If you're an ambitious entrepreneur, or one in the making, who's looking to create a business that makes an impact and a life you love, you're in the right place, friend. Let's get started. 

AMY: If you love Online Marketing Made Easy, you’ve got to check out Entrepreneurs on Fire, hosted by my dear friend John Lee Dumas. He discusses things like how to live tax free as an entrepreneur—uh, yes, please—and shares inspiring stories like how a college sophomore turned twenty dollars, cell phone, and a dream into a cookie company valued at over five hundred million dollars. I mean, you got to love stories like that. He'll leave you with actionable steps and fired up. Be sure to check out Entrepreneurs on Fire wherever you get your podcasts. 

Well, hey, there, friend. Welcome back to Online Marketing Made Easy. I hope you're having a wonderful day. And I'm excited about today's topic because it's something that I've actually struggled with for a long time, so I'm kind of unpacking it today on the podcast.  

But before we get there, I want to remind you, I've been mentioning this in a lot of my podcast episodes, but I've got this really cool freebie. It's all about content creation. So if you've ever struggled with planning or organizing or creating your content, this is for you. So here's the deal: I created a free three-month plug-and-play content-calendar template so that mapping out your content can be so much easier and actually fun. And I created this content-calendar template years ago, and it was really popular, so I decided to upgrade it and revamp it so it's even better. So this updated version is not only about the content you create weekly, like on a blog or podcast or video, but it's also your social-media content so you can see everything together in one place. So I'm going to give you the URL if you haven't already gotten it. If you already got it, high five. I'm so glad. I hope you're using it. But for those of you who haven't grabbed it yet, So that's a little bit of a different URL than I've used. We're using the actual hashtag symbol. So It will take you right there to go grab my three-month free plug-and-play content-calendar template. It's what I use to keep everything organized, and I hope you'll use it too.  

Okay, so here's the thing: let's get to today's episode. I was scrolling through Instagram the other day, and I noticed—and I've noticed this for a long time, but really the other day it was, like, shining very brightly—about how people invite you into their lives through social media. And it got me thinking about how I personally show up on Instagram. Maybe you've had the same thing. Like, you watch how other people are showing up, and you kind of ask yourself, like, “Well, how am I showing up?”  

And I know that on social media I'm more reserved about my private life. And to be honest, it was even more so in the past. But today I do share more so than I did even years ago. And I don't know if you have stopped by my Instagram page recently, but if you have, you might have noticed that I don't have a ton of personal posts. I have some, but not nearly as many as some other business or marketing influencers out there. And there are so many people in the public eye that really let you into their lives, at home and in, let's say, their business or really all sides of them. They really let you in.  

And to be honest, doing that has been a bit of a struggle for me over the years for a couple of reasons, so hear me out. First, I've always thought that if I'm teaching online-marketing strategies, nobody cares about my personal life. Nobody really cares or needs to know about my precious dog, Scout, or being a stepmom, or my struggles with anxiety and depression, or my insecurities with getting on video because of my weight challenges, or my life with my husband, Hobie, and what my marriage looks like. I've always had this thought—now, we'll talk about this thought in a moment—but, like, nobody cares about that. They're here for the marketing strategies, so I better deliver. And I just felt like the other stuff kind of muddled my message, and not to totally diss myself, but I think, like, why would anyone care? Like, truly, I love my life, but it is not extra exciting, that's for sure. So I always thought people are following me on social media because they want to learn how to be a better online marketer, a better course creator, a better business owner, so, again, I better deliver.  

I was really wrong. I was really wrong about this. What I've learned along the way is that people want to do business with those that they know, like, and trust. And in order to build that “know, like, and trust” factor, you have to let people in on a personal level. And to be honest, that little voice in my head that told me, “Nobody cares about my personal life,” was a limiting belief that I carried along with me for far too long. And now that I've overcome it, I found that showcasing the human side of being an entrepreneur has really helped my audience relate to me more, like, get me, understand me, and connect with me, both on social media and when I'm promoting my webinars and products and all of that.  

Now, don't get me wrong. I don't share everything, nor do I plan to, because if I'm being really transparent, I'm just not super comfortable with that, even though there are tons of people in my industry that do it. But I am definitely open to doing it more, and I've started to do it more, and on my podcast, I've talked about things that literally I would have thought I never would have talked about before. So if you've been around for a while, you know that I'm definitely more open to sharing my personal side, and I've proven that. But geez, I held this belief that did not serve me for far too long.  

Now, I also want to bring something up that some of you might really be able to relate to, or maybe this will become your reality, and so what I share with you now might help you a little bit, but I have a husband who's not very active on social media and doesn't love being on social media and doesn't really like being on camera all the time, either. Hobie’s a really private person. I think it comes from his military days and just, you know, being private in everything that he's done in the past. And so now when we have special moments, when we're on a date night, a vacation, taking a drive, just sharing time together, when I turn on the camera, he feels as though I'm not being present with him. He doesn't want to record our lives in every facet. It's just not his thing. And while I totally understand where he's coming from and I want to be respectful of his feelings, thank God he also understands that I've chosen to be out there and in the spotlight. So it's a little bit of a back-and-forth struggle for us, but we talk about it in a really healthy way, meaning we used to argue about it. Like, “Come on, babe. Just let me take this video,” or “I need to do this for work.” And he's like, “Really? Do you need to?” I’m like, “Yes,” because I choose to share my life online, and I want to be more open about it, so I needed him to get on board. And he has been so much better over the last few years than he was, let's say, ten years ago. Oh, geez, it was really bad.  

So I found that having conversations with him, letting him know why I feel this is important and I want to let people into our lives—and we have this amazing, beautiful life together. We have a really healthy marriage, and I would love to share more of that—maybe it will help somebody or make someone feel more connected because they get that we're more alike than they think, or help someone out of a challenge they're in, or whatever it might be. So we've had many conversations, and he's much more open to it because he understands why I believe that it's important.  

So when there's an opportunity to record something fun together, I just say, “Hey, I want to share a little bit about this,” or “Are you open to it?” And then he says, yes, he's totally up for it, and then we do it together. Whereas, I think before I kind of forced it on him. I didn't ask, he didn't have a choice, and then we got into fights. So that's the truth. 

It's really funny because we did an Instagram Reel that has, like, 1.8 million views on it, and it was where we were answering questions about our marriage. And I told him, I said, “Babe, we literally have so many views on this one Reel.” And he teases. He's like, “Just bring in the closer. Like, I'm here when you need me.” So now he has a little ego about him because truly, when Hobie is on social media, we get more likes and more engagement. I don't know. I'm insulted, my friends. I'm insulted that it takes my husband to get the engagement up. But it does sometimes, and so now he's like, “All right, I'll do this for you,” like, kind of fun. But we do have more fun with it, and he's embraced it more.  

But it was a challenge I had for a really long time, which probably is why in the past I was really reluctant to share the personal stuff because I had a husband that felt like I was literally ruining our special moments together. That’s really fun, right?  

And when we did that one Reel together, Instagram Reel, where we answered questions about our marriage, afterwards, he looked at me, and he said, “That was really fun.” Before we even knew it was going to, you know, kind of a little viral thing, before we even knew that, he enjoyed it. So in my head, I thought I need to do more of these things that he enjoys because it was a lot of fun, and it did well. So that was kind of like an aha moment for me. 

And the thing is I would love to introduce you more to Hobie. He's a huge part of my life, of course, but also a huge support to me as an entrepreneur. And he has a unique perspective of being a husband to someone who's putting themselves out there. We have this unique perspective where I make more money than he does, and that's something we talk about, and we had to work our way through. And he's just a really cool guy. So, hopefully, I get to have him even more on social because he's really fun and I want to introduce you more to him.  

So here's the thing: if you find yourself in a similar situation—maybe you have a spouse or a partner who is reluctant to be on social media, or anxiety over opening up your personal life to your audience. Maybe it has nothing to do with a partner, but you just don't want to open up more; or you feel like, why do I need to, or is this necessary? I hope this quick little conversation has helped you because I really do believe that my business is more, like, I wanted to say the word richer. It feels richer, and I don't mean dollar bills. It just feels richer when I can share more of my personal life with you on social, because here’s the absolute truth. Here's something I just want to end it with this, and put a bow on this conversation. I feel that the more I share my personal life on social media, the more real I feel on social media, meaning that if I only share the wins and I only share the moments that are super curated, that you are not seeing all of me, and then I don't feel authentic, and it doesn't feel good to get on social media. But if I can jump on social media and share with you something I'm embarrassed about or struggled with—or really, you know, the podcast, I do that a lot, and then I use social media to promote the podcast. So I can use social media to say, “Hey, on the podcast today I'm sharing something that I've been embarrassed about forever, and I hate to talk about it, but I think it's important. Go take a listen,”—then that's also me sharing more of my personal side through the podcast but promoting it on social.  

So all of that just makes me feel more me. And I don't want a business where I'm only sharing the highlight reels and the good stuff, and then you don't even know me. And so for those of you who are struggling to put yourself out there on social media, especially the personal stuff, my advice is share more of the personal stuff, and you will feel like the real you is being seen. And so it doesn't feel fake or ridiculous or silly or whatever. It just feels like life. And I think that's really cool.  

So thanks so much for hanging out with me. This is just a Shorty episode. I wanted to share what was on my heart around being more open and less resistant to social media in general. 

And if you have a friend or an entrepreneur peer that you know kind of, like, struggles with social media, or has a spouse or a partner that just can't get on board with them, share this episode with them, and, hopefully, it will make them feel more seen and less alone. 

So there you have it. Thank you so very much for tuning in. Be sure to follow Online Marketing Made Easy on your favorite listening platform. And if you haven't done so already, please leave me a review. I'd love to hear from you. I'd love to hear what you're enjoying and what you want more of. So if you've never left a review for Online Marketing Made Easy, I would be forever grateful.  

All right, my sweet friends. I'll see you on Thursday of this week for more entrepreneurial goodness, same time, same place. Bye for now. 

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