How do you know when you’re ready to start something?
- How do you know when your work is good enough to be displayed publicly?
- Should you start a blog before you’re a good writer?
- Should you begin podcasting before you’re well-spoken?
- Should you share your art before you consider yourself an artist?
- Should you start now or wait before sharing?
- Is what you can do now good enough?
I’ll tell you what “good enough” is: doing your best. As you improve, your best will get better and better. But just because your best right now isn’t where you want to be doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be iterating in public.
Be willing to iterate in public.
You’re not going to be perfect, but that’s the point. Make mistakes in front of people! It humanizes you and shows that you’re a real person.
- For fun: Go check out the early episodes of seanwes tv. We’ve definitely iterated in public. =)
What if I Make a Mistake?
If you’re smart, you’ll recognize mistakes as an opportunity to teach. You discovered something that didn’t work and now you know why. This is a chance to provide value to your audience.
Learn as you go. When you iterate in public, you’re making your learning experience visible to everyone. This is a fantastic way to teach!
You’re not the only one starting from the beginning. If you go back the archives of the people you look up to, you’ll see that their early work isn’t as good! It sounds obvious right? But it’s easy to forget.
We forget that everyone starts from the beginning.
If some of the people you look up to haven’t shared their early work, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t either—it means you have a unique opportunity they don’t! Think about how relatable your early work will be to other people just starting out. They’ll be able to follow along and grow with you.
They’ll feel like they got to witness something special as it was happening and you rob them of that experience when you don’t iterate in public.
Your Track Record Shows Your Hard Work
You might be tempted to delete your old work, but don’t! Channel that energy into creating new and better work. Most people will see the new stuff anyway, but for the few that go back, they’re rewarded with the opportunity to see a chronicle of your journey.
They’re able to see how you progressed, identify with your early work, and recognize it as where they’re at right now. Essentially, “Hey, look! He started right where I am now! Maybe I can actually do this!”
It shows people that improvement isn’t magic. It’s simply hard work over time.
Another benefit of iterating in public is the ability to see how far you’ve come. It’s an encouragement to others, but it’s also an encouragement to ourselves. We often forget how far we’ve come or how much we’ve improved. When we share that early work, we can go back and see for ourselves.
Perfection Is Not the Goal
You have no idea how somebody else’s situation might be similar enough to yours that they can draw inspiration from you sharing your story.
The focus shouldn’t be on perfection, it should be on authenticity—which is often imperfection. That’s what resonates with people. People resonate with humanness, authenticity, imperfection, and transparency. That growth actually strengthens the bond between you and your audience. You have to open yourself to them and show those imperfections.
Think of any relationship that means anything to you. You’ve been through things with that person. It’s not just surface-level attraction, you overcame obstacles.
Your audience can overcome those obstacles with you too if you just allow yourself to be open.
Be willing to grow, be willing to start when you’re not perfect. Start when you’re not “good enough.” Start when you’re not “well-spoken” enough. Just be willing to iterate in public.
You’re always going to wish that you started sooner. So start now.