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Chapter
8

Find your [R]eluctances: who you don’t want to be

PIE has given you a clear illustration of who you are. But the R in the PIERS framework— Reluctances—is all about who you aren’t. Or, more specifically, who you don't want to be and what you don’t want to do. 

If there’s one thing people love to do on Twitter, it’s jump on a trend bandwagon. One person starts gaining traction with GIFs; now everyone is posting GIFs. One person writes clickbait Tweets; every Tweet is now clickbait. Or, as in this real-life example, it’s all about the memes. 

One friendly and supportive entrepreneur that I admire on Twitter is Dagobert Renouf. He’s the Entrepreneur Meme King, creating and posting hilarious memes related to the founder's experience. It works: Practically every new meme he posts has enviable engagement. Other founders took notice and started posting their own memes and I even wondered if I should join them.

But I realized quickly that it was a dangerous move for me. Clearly, Dagobert has a great sense of humor (one of his “Exceptions”), but that’s not one of my strong suits. While he maybe can come up with a meme in a snap, it would take me hours and might not even be funny! Why not focus on my strong points instead of trying to copy his? The last thing I want is to just become another meme guy. Taking a closer look at Dagobert’s profile helped me realize that one of my Reluctances is definitely “memes.”

Here are some questions to help you isolate the things you don’t want.

  • What things don’t come naturally to me? What takes me forever to complete? 

  • What things do I want to make sure are never associated with my brand? 

  • What would cause more harm than good on my profile?

Here’s what I came up with: 

  • I never want to appear “above” anyone else. Sometimes entrepreneurs think they need to hype themselves up with fancy portraits or lists of years and years of experience. But I don’t want to appear that way. Instead, I want to be on the same level as my audience—never above. My content speaks to my abilities. 

  • I’m not interested in shortcuts. Hacks are really popular for online entrepreneurs, but I’m just not into them. I don’t use them myself and I don’t teach people how to do them. Instead, I want to go deep on the fundamentals to help drive change for my audience. 

  • Memes aren’t for me. I’m casual and personal, but funny isn’t my brain. That means memes are not on the table for me. I’m just not a meme guy! 

Exercise: Reveal your reluctances

Now it’s your turn. Take a minute to reflect on the following questions. While it may seem counterintuitive, it’s just as important to know who you aren’t as who you are.

  • What things don’t come naturally to me? What takes me forever to complete? 

  • What things do I want to make sure are never associated with my brand? 

  • What would cause more harm than good on my profile?

Write 3-4 sentences for each and highlight the key Reluctance in each.

What did we learn?

What is a Reluctance?

Why is it important to include Reluctances in your Twitter profile?

What are two of your Reluctances?

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