Sharing Your Struggles Can Help Others Overcome and Reach Their Potential
Nikki Discusses How She Overcame Her Own Doubts About Writing Her Book, and Learned How to Collect Stories That Relate to and Inspire Her Readers
Invisible Stories Season 2 Episode 3 with Nikki Groom
Today’s podcast guest is online business brand and marketing strategist Nikki Groom. Nikki is the founder of the Movement Makers Mastermind, which is a small business incubator for women business owners, as well as a podcaster and author of A Power of Your Own: How to Ignite Your Potential, Uncover Your Purpose, and Blaze Your Own Trail in Life and Business.
In this podcast, Nikki and I discuss the love-hate relationship that exists for authors writing their first book. She offers her insight on:
- How she overcame her own doubts about her writing in order to serve a greater purpose by inspiring other entrepreneurs with shared experiences.
- The benefits of working with a writing community as a support system.
- And how she walked the line between getting blunt feedback and critiques from others, while still staying true to her vision and her mission.
A Power of Your Own by Nikki Groom
The world has taught so many of us to mistakenly believe that we’re undeserving of happiness or success, because of the simple fact of who we are.
In A Power of Your Own: How to Ignite Your Potential, Uncover Your Purpose, and Blaze Your Own Trail in Life and Business, Nikki Groom weaves an empowering and inspiring message for women entrepreneurs and anyone who has ever felt underestimated: that no matter who you are, you matter, you are enough, and you are needed on the planet.
Through nine refreshingly real and relatable chapters, this book will help you to reconnect with your inner power, live on purpose, and do more work that matters.
Featuring stories and insights from:
- Reshma Saujani, CEO of Girls Who Code
- Kelsey Ramsden, dubbed Canada’s Top Female Entrepreneur
- Lisa Van Ahn, a retired kickboxer who fought for the US National Kickboxing team and won a bronze medal at the Pan American Games
- And many more…
Packed with powerful life lessons and real-world stories, A Power of Your Own is a business and self-help book like no other.
- [00:00:30] Nikki: Yeah, it’s um, I’m one of those multipotentialite so it’s hard for me to put a label on it, but I would sum it up by saying I’m an online business brand and marketing strategist. And I’m also the founder of the movement makers mastermind, which is a small business incubator for women business owners. That’s it in a nutshell. Yeah.
- [00:04:12] Nikki: Yeah, that’s a good question. I think on the one hand, like I know that I can write, right. And I’ve always written stories. I’ve always written on behalf of other people. Like I can write. So I don’t know if I expected it to be quite as hard as it was. And then on the other hand, I hear people say all the time, like writing a book is no walk in the park and you have to be prepared. Um, and how I ended up describing it even, um, you know, in the latest stages of writing the book was that, It’s kind of this love hate journey because on the one hand, you’re really getting the opportunity to express yourself and put your stories down on paper and on the other, it’s like, you know, all those doubts rise to the surface. It’s like, I can’t do this. This book sucks. No, one’s going to read it. Like I’m going to get trolled on Amazon. Like ridiculous. Um, thoughts, they all, um, made an appearance.
- [00:05:57] Nikki: Um, I think a few things really helped. So I wasn’t writing in isolation. I did it as kind of this community book writing project. So there were a ton of other people like me who were in the trenches with me and just knowing that they were kind of up against some of the same stuff was really helpful. Um, and having people I could kind of bounce ideas off was, was great as well. So that community element was Absolutely indispensable. And then I think, you know, playing to my strengths so I know how to tell a good story. And so, um, one of the things that I had done in the past getting is to interview a lot of people about the topic of my book and then ask them to give applications and kind of draw stories out of them. So the minute that they said, well, there was this one time when I’d be like, excellent, we’ve got a story here. So I kind of wrote them up. And then notice where they fell into different category stories and topics and chapters, and then began to weave them together. So I really did focus on my strengths.
- [00:07:23] Nikki: And I do really focus on that storytelling piece because it is what came naturally to me. Um, and I think that the third and final thing that really helped is that throughout my entrepreneurial journey, I’ve learned that. No matter what comes up for me, no matter what limiting belief or, or, um, what story comes up, that’s kind of holding me back. Someone else is struggling with the same thing. And so knowing that, knowing that I’m not alone and kind of struggling to write a book or, or get my thoughts and opinions out that knowing that women in particular really struggle with being more visible and being heard and using our voices. Helped me just remember, like this may help other people and doing this. You’re leading by example, like this is possible for me. So it’s possible for you too.
- [00:08:46] Nikki: Okay. Yeah. And it’s interesting because it’s very easy to write for other people to market for other people, but when it comes to yourself, it’s kind of a different story. So I was so immersed in book writing that I probably didn’t know, um, you know, bring people along with me on that journey as much as maybe I would have liked. having said that I do feel strongly about doing that. I think it’s really helpful to people to feel kind of engaged in that whole process. And there definitely were Parts of the book writing process that I kind of felt in my gut. Yeah. This is the right way to go. And then there were other parts where I thought, no, I really do want to hear what other people want, because I want to write a book that’s relevant to them. And I think that that’s when I, when it comes to marketing or any kind of messaging and writing, I’m always trying to navigate that. You know, I want to be true to me and what I believe and my mission and my vision. And at the same time, I really want to put my people, my community at the heart of everything I do. So that anything that I create. Makes sense for them as well. So it’s kind of this, it’s almost like this scale, this, this balancing act between honoring myself and honoring my audience as well.
- [00:10:41] Nikki: That feedback was invaluable. Even if people were like, this is awesome. Um, or this story didn’t really make sense here, or I think he needed a bit more of this. Um, it was, it was tough going through that process, but it was very necessary and it helped me realize, um, what wasn’t quite jelling for people. Um, and really helped when it came to my rewrites. And then, um, and actually, yeah, I ended up enlisting the help of, uh, an editor as well, which was super helpful because, um, yeah, I, I knew that people were really responding to the book. I thought it was great, but I almost needed more critical feedback, which might sound strange, but I was like, you know, I know this book. Isn’t perfect. Not that I’m aiming for perfection, but I know it needs some work. So I need someone who can just be, be straight with me and let me know what it needs. And then the other time that I really did that was when it came to the title and subtitle. I think I probably made people’s heads explode when I was trying to figure out what the subtitle should be, which is probably why it ended up being so long.
- [00:14:54] Nikki: Um, and she was just fantastic. Like she just, she has such a great way of, of delivering the feedback that you need in a kind of gentle, but straightforward way. Should we say sometimes, sometimes blunt and it would make me laugh cause it’s like, yeah, I needed to hear that. Um, Yeah, so that really helped.
- [00:16:23] Nikki: That’s amazing and so valuable. Yeah. Because, cause you’re right. Like, I, I really appreciate it. This book is fantastic because part of me knew it could be better. And so I was trying not to be that perfectionist and I talk a lot about perfectionism and the book and being brave, not perfect. Um, so I was trying to be brave, not perfect. And I knew it could be better. I love that you do that.
- [00:17:07] Nikki: You know, I think in writing the book, I think so often what we do for a living reflects kind of maybe some of our own experiences and what we really feel called to help people with. And I know that I have grappled so much with my own sense of enoughness, that if someone says to me, you know, I was really struggling with feeling good enough, and this book just helped me realize that it’s okay. I don’t have to have it all figured out, I’m not alone. I do matter. I am needed on this planet, you know, my, my work is important. I think that I will probably cry. Happily.
- [00:18:33] Nikki: How do I correlate the content that’s in the book with the things that I teach my mastermind is about. Um, and so that’s kind of, I guess like three pillars is the mastermind, then there’s the book. And then there’s a podcast. And my goal is to really tie them all together. Um, also as part of the book, I’m launching a membership community as well. Again, just to kind of give people more access to. The advice that they need, not just from me, but from other, other people like them. And just to help them again, realize like you are not the only one struggling with this, there is somebody else. And maybe they are a few steps ahead of you and they can help you out. So it definitely is very aligned with that whole side of my business, which I’m really excited about.
- [00:24:27] Nikki: You as an author, kind of like the sun and then any books that you read, create, or any program as you roll out or kind of like your solar system. And so you don’t have to completely attach everything that you’re doing to one book like that. Doesn’t have to be the be all and all, you can always write another book. And that just really helped free me up to write the book that was speaking to me right now, and then know that in the future I can. I can write another book.
- [00:26:08] Nikki: Agreed. Yeah, I think so too. And I would liken it to the entrepreneurial journey because when you’re in business for yourself, you make a mistake and you’re like, Oh, I’m not going to do that again. And the same thing when you were in a book, I’m like, okay, next time, I’m not going to do that. I’m going to do this.
- [00:27:03] Nikki: Yeah. And I, I, it’s something that I talk about in the book is that I really believe that we need to be more liberal with the truth. And, you know, there is a messy middle that, you know, people might look at my gorgeous cover and my wonderfully succinct prose and be like, wow, wow. It was like, how did she do this? I want to do the same thing. But it’s been a heck of a long journey to get here. And I think the more that we can really normalize that, the more we can help other people who maybe haven’t done what we’ve done yet, but want to do that. Like, you know, Strap yourself in because it’s going to be quite the journey.
- [00:28:04] Nikki: Yeah, I think I got stuck for so long and mindset stuff and trying to start from, you know, line one chapter one, and it just write and, you know, laying out my outline exactly what was going to be in which chapter, I got stuck for too long in that part of the process and what really helped, um, it kind of opened the gates to me, writing the book really was collecting stories, which I’ve talked about so much and I love, um, your banner: Everyone has a story. Um, so I was lucky actually, actually I had a project that I started back in 2015, called a hundred stories worth telling. So I had a lot of stories in my back pocket and I also have my podcasts and things like that. But even just getting on the phone with people and saying, Hey, I’m writing about a book about this or on this theme or at the intersections of X, Y, and Z. And what are your opinions on that? And then can you give me any examples from your own journey? Um, and just kind of listening [00:29:00] out for those stories and then kind of just collecting them all. And then I think they very naturally fell into different chapters. So that was so useful for me. And I would recommend that to anybody. That was definitely the most helpful part of the process for me.