What do you care about?

What do you care about?

When I started writing at age 11, I'd spend hours tapping away at my chunky Compaq keyboard.

I'd write short stories about comic book characters and celebrities. I'd rewrite chapters and endings of beloved novels, and try to imitate those writers who meant most to me. 

Now, when I read through those pages, I'm struck by my commitment to the creative process. I wasn't bothered by how good my work was; I was more invested in the act of storytelling and writing what I cared about.

And that investment helped me become a stronger writer. 

That's the key to creating your most compelling content: you have to care about the stories you're telling.

It seems almost too simple, especially since that level of creativity-without-abandon comes to us so naturally as children. In adulthood, however, we convince ourselves that we have to sound more "professional" and less like ourselves.

The result is lackluster storytelling that no one can relate to and that no one wants to read.

There's a quote by Pablo Picasso that speaks to this so well: "Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once we grow up." 

The solution to Picasso's presented problem is to start not with what you think you should sound like. Instead, start with what you care actually about. 

It's too easy to convince ourselves that we have no relevant stories of interest, but that's simply not true.

When you're creating content, ask yourself what you really want your audience to learn about you or themselves through your storytelling. What's the proverbial moral of your story? If you know what the moral is, work backwards from there and think about the experiences you've had that help illustrate that point. 

The biggest misconception here is that your stories have to be directly related to the type of content you're creating. For example, you have to tell "business stories" for your business blog.

That's not true and it's boring.  

If you're a businesswoman who has a passion for making pastries, for instance, there's no reason why stories about your pastry-making won't bring to life the points you make for your audience.

If anything, injecting more of what you care about into your content will help you highlight not only the ultimate point of the content you create, but also emphasize your POV and expertise to the people you most want to reach. 

Because though it may be easy to fake it in-person, audiences today have highly refined BS detectors. They can sense if you really care about what you're talking about or if you're only running lukewarm. 

Do them -- and yourself -- a huge favor: embrace what you care about so that your audience can benefit from who you are. 

No means yes.

No means yes.

What should I change?

What should I change?