people, business, confidence, thoughts, confident, anthea, authority, deliver, action, niche, build, book, terms, specialization, result, important, reword, perfect, feel, challenge
Anthea Armar, Voiceover, Alastair McDermott
Anthea Armar 00:00
So what they see, they are going to compare based on their own life, their own experience, what are the things that they’ve seen, what things they’ve achieved, etcetera, and say that this is imperfect. So the question then becomes, what’s the point wasting all of the extra time to make something perfect that other people are unlikely to see as imperfect, anyway.
Welcome to The Recognized Authority, a podcast that helps specialized consultants and domain experts on your journey to become known as an authority in your field. So you can increase your reach, have more impact and work with great clients. Here’s your host, Alastair McDermott.
Alastair McDermott 00:38
Before we get into today’s episode, I just want to briefly let you know about a free email course that is available at TheRecognizedAuthority.com. It’s a free seven day email course on how to become a recognized authority, you can subscribe to that just by visiting TheRecognizedAuthority.com/homepage. So today, my guest is Anthea Armar. Anthea is an empowering, faith filled International Coach and speaker. And she’s a learning consultant on a mission to educate, motivate and transform the minds of people who want to create more impact in the world. So welcome to The Recognized Authority, Anthea.
Anthea Armar 01:14
Thank you, thank you for having me.
Alastair McDermott 01:16
So I’m really interested in talking to you about a whole bunch of different things. But I want to get into mindset a little bit. And I know that one of the things that is hard for people, when they consider building their own authority is they have to create a lot of content. And they have to go out and put themselves out there, which is the phrase that people use, particularly around social media. And this can be we can feel a lot of internal resistance to this. So I just wanted to talk to you about about the concept of putting yourself out there. Can you give me a little bit of your thoughts on on how to deal with that, particularly if you’re not really enamored of the idea of you know, having your yourself all out there in the world?
Anthea Armar 01:56
Yeah, definitely there is there is for people who, you know, since we’ve moved into having much more of a virtual presence, it’s been a lot more challenging for people who are used to just going into spaces and delivering the work because they’ve applied for, you know, an opportunity they’ve had their CV, they’ve had a connection come through and you know, the the process for acquiring work has been very, very simple. Now, you move into a space where it’s all about building relationships, it’s about having connections with people, and going through a process where you are explaining the value that you bring to any business, organization, individual etc. And for most people, they’ve never had to really do that. Because there’s always been to a degree, some form of sales process or sales, person business development, who have brought the business in, and they’ve just been very good at executing and delivering to a high standard. So you’re in this position where the only way you can get the business in is to put yourself out there and putting yourself out there is the equivalent of being vulnerable. It’s the equivalent of being exposed. And so this actually links to mindset in that perspective. Because the thoughts that you have about just being able to make maybe one social media post, maybe sending a cold email, you know, doing those sorts of things that typically would be done by experts in marketing or sales, business development, it’s now something you need to do. And you feel like I’m basically putting myself out there, I’m now standing on the stage and saying, This is what I do. But everyone in the audience is better at what I do. And so immediately you’re filled with fear, you feel fear of rejection. Because what if somebody says no? What if somebody says they don’t like the price? What if somebody says they don’t appreciate the the process that you’re going to use to deliver a service. And so we actually step out of business mode. And we we actually put our egos in there because it now becomes a personal thing, right, where we previously may have had an organization, which we can to a degree hide behind. It’s now us. We are the lead were the star of the show. And to make those social media posts to figure out a sales process to start having discovery calls, just feels like way too much because we just are not used to do that process. So we’re just essentially just being thrust right into the fire and expecting to, you know, climb out of it very quickly.
Alastair McDermott 04:47
I know that this comes naturally to a lot of people, or at least it seems to come naturally to a lot of people. And I know one or two of them. So I know it definitely comes naturally to some people to you know to talk about themselves and their own work in a very natural kind of positive energetic way. But then, like, I know, I feel the internal resistance, there’s all sorts of phrases in different places like toot your own horn and blow your own trumpet and, and things that are kind of like, I know that it’s a cultural thing, you’re here in Ireland, particularly compared with the US by not promoting yourself so much. I think it’s it’s more culturally built in, in, in the States, at least, I know, there’s I think tall poppy syndrome, they call it in Australia. So there is this thing of not, you know, not getting above your station, and some of that as a cultural thing that might be built into us. And then there’s just like, the natural fears that you’re talking about the fears of rejection, and, and people’s people saying no, or people, you know, people, you know, criticizing our work. I think that’s, that’s a big fear. The other big fear is, is nobody criticizing our work, and nobody’s saying anything about it.
Anthea Armar 05:58
Yeah, and that’s the thing, when you have, again, is, it’s just a very strange kind of transition that I don’t think a lot of people were prepared for, you know, actually being the person who does the sales, part two does the business development, who has the conversations with the clients who delivers the work, who has to follow up and get feedback and testimonials, and all of that. And so, immediately, what happens is you’re thrust outside of your comfort zone. So the resistance that you’re talking about, is you saying, Oh, this is not familiar to me. So if I’m not sure, and I tell people or I try to go through this process, someone’s going to call me out, someone’s going to say, oh, you’re a fraud, you’re not good at this, someone’s going to challenge me in everything that I’m doing, because they’ve had experience in it, or they’ve, you know, worked with other people who’ve got more confidence in whatever it is that you’re trying to do at that particular moment. So, you know, this, this is one of the biggest challenges, because, again, just being in that position, where you have to separate yourself from your service, so I am not my service, I am the vessel for which the services delivered. And that’s where the challenge is, because I don’t get rejected as an individual, somebody is rejecting the service that’s being offered, I don’t have to take that personally. Because it’s like, you know, a very simple example is if we go into the supermarket, how many products are there, even when you think about one particular product, there are several different brands. And in that particular moment, a person will decide based on their preferences, what they just they want to buy in that particular moment. Now, the brands don’t need to take any offense, because they’re there, they’re still saying, Hey, I’m here, I can offer you this, this is what the benefits are of the products that we have. And if this aligns to you then get it. So what the issue is, is that we’re not thinking about the customer or clients perspective, we’re taking it as our perspective, I am delivering this service. And you said no, to me, versus it’s not right for that client, for whatever reason. So I think that’s where a lot of the resistance comes just because it’s too personal. They’re not removed, distancing themselves from the actual services being delivered.
Alastair McDermott 08:23
Yeah, that makes that makes sense. I like that concept of separating yourself. I think it’s hard to do. But that makes sense. Is there anything to make that easier?
Anthea Armar 08:34
You know, just doing it? I mean, it’s one of those things where the more you resist, the bigger the resistance. So when you feel like, I’m going to be overwhelmed by something, you know, yeah, actually, this, this actually fits within mindset. Because when we say certain things are hard to do, their only hard because we tell ourselves, they’re hard. You know, I can’t run a race. I can’t jump over, you know, a wall. I can’t, you know, send a cold email, I can’t put a post out, that’s not perfect. Who says you can’t do any of those things? It’s us. So to make it easier, we have to go through an internal process where we retrain our thoughts. Because what happens is when we are in a state of overwhelm, or we feel anxious or worried about what the outcome would be, and I always say, what is the point of worrying about a future that doesn’t exist yet? So I’m thinking about sending out an email or posting something on social media. And immediately I’ve gone to the end. No one’s going to like it. No one’s going to comment. If anyone does comment, they’re likely to be, you know, saying something negative. I haven’t even started to put the content together yet. So my entire mind has been completely distracted on a negative outcome in the future that doesn’t exist because I haven’t taken the action now. So the best way to make it easier is to say, what is it I really want to do? Is it I need to put out content on social media? Do I need to, you know, arrange podcast interviews? Do I need to arrange speaking events? Do I need to hire somebody for sales? Do I need to learn more about sales? Whatever it is that you need to do? Just think about the first step, what’s the next thing that I can do for that particular task or activity to get completed? It hasn’t been done yet. So what response happens is completely irrelevant, because right now I’m just taking that first step. So that’s the way to kind of remove a lot of the overwhelm. And just be in a position where you can be a bit more present and think about what the next thing that needs to be done is.
Alastair McDermott 10:48
Yeah, one of the, the phrases that I’m trying to embrace more is the concept of taking imperfect action. Because I, I always feel this, this need to try and perfect things before I put them out. Probably because of that fear. I know, I, you know, I, I think that maybe calling it you know, saying something like I’m a perfectionist, I think that’s more of a humble brag, really than I think it’s probably more about, you know, the fear of it’s not ready yet. And so what I’m trying to do personally, is just say, Okay, I know this isn’t perfect, but it’s pretty damn good. And pretty damn good is good enough to ship. So let’s just hit the publish button, and go with it. Because one of the things in in building authority that’s important is to build a body of work and to publish, and there is an acceleration effect. And if you only publish once a month, it’s going to be very different from somebody who published it every day, just in terms of the impact that it’s going to have. And so that embracing that perfection, and it’s, it’s not something I’ve perfected, but it’s something I’m working on trying to do is is is to, to acknowledge, okay, this isn’t going to be perfect. And there might be a typo, I’ve, I’ve done my best to make sure there isn’t. But you know, there might be a typo, or maybe the concept is imperfect, or the examples that I’ve used are imperfect. So I’m just wondering, do you have any thoughts around around that, like taking imperfect action?
Anthea Armar 12:18
Yeah, I have plenty. That perfectionism is such is such an interesting topic. So you know, it just in terms of what you said, you know, building authority, I think building authority has an element of leadership in it. Because what you’re saying is, I’m somebody who you can come to, for guidance, or to be shown the way to be, you know, to receive a thought or a concept or something that maybe challenges the way in which the majority might be thinking. And I can see a place that I’m trying to direct people to, that gives them some form of result based on the challenges that they’re having. And the importance of leadership is not to be perfect, because that goes against what leadership is: you’re “role modeling” behavior. So by you trying to show up perfect, sets the bar so high for anybody trying to follow you that it becomes unreachable. And then what you actually end up doing is instead of inspiring people, you demotivate them. Because now they’re in a position where they’re trying to look at someone and they’re thinking I can never be you. I can never do the things that you do. And so immediately, just your presence makes them feel less of themselves. And that is the opposite effect to what you want to have, in terms of, you know, building authority. And the the second point on that actually is around perfection. Now, the way in which all of us exist in this world, and how we live our life is based on the lens through which we look through. Now the lens that we look through is based on our life experience, what we’ve seen what we’ve heard, you know, things that people have told us things that we’ve read, things that we’ve watched assumptions that we’ve made, and things that we’ve been through, things we’ve healed from, and also not not quite healed from yet, too. Now, if you think about that, this is like your own recipe of life. You’ve got very specific ingredients that you put into your life. And the result of that is a very unique cake. Now think about every single individual in this world, they are going to have a very unique and different set of ingredients. They might be similar, but the combination of those things and the result that comes from there is going to be completely different. So when we talk about perfectionism, it’s actually pointless. And the reason I say that is because perfection is only related to the person who is trying to perfect when you put something out that you believe is perfect and nobody’s looking at it from your lens. So what they see, they are going to compare based on their own life, their own experience, what are the things that they’ve seen, what things they’ve achieved, etcetera, and say that this is imperfect. So the question then becomes, what’s the point wasting all of the extra time to make something perfect that other people are unlikely to see as imperfect, anyway?
Alastair McDermott 15:25
That’s fascinating. And I love the analogies, the recipe for life and, and the different cakes, everybody’s cake is unique. And this is something I’ve talked to a friend and mentor of mine, Philip Morgan, because something we’re both very passionate about is specialization and helping people to niche down or niche down. And I was talking to Philip, and he’s he’s written a book about specialization. And I was following in his footsteps. And I am also writing a book about specialization. And I said to him, I said, Philip, you’re, you know, you’re training me up here. And you’re helping me to become a competitor to you and even write a book that’s competing with yours. And he said, he said, Yes, but even if we started with this exact same outline, the two of us would write two completely different books about this exact topic, even following the same chapter headings. And he’s completely right about that. And so we do have some interesting conversation about that. But that really resonates with me, when he talks about those unique ingredients and things like that, because I, personally, that’s why I feel like there’s no such thing as a direct competitor. You know, maybe maybe there might be in commodity markets, but in the world that we’re in, in terms of expert services, professional services, usually there’s no such thing as an exact direct competitor, because everybody is is different in some way. So yeah, so I’m not sure. I’m not sure where I should go with that next. I know that one of the things that we were talking about, we were talking about mindset, confidence, and clarity. So we’ve talked a little bit about about mindset, maybe we should talk about confidence, or can you talk about how those relate?
Anthea Armar 17:07
Yeah, sure. And, you know, just just to kind of, before we transition into that, when we talk about the competition, just the comment that you made, I completely agree, we don’t have any competitors. And this isn’t an arrogance thing. It’s because we are essentially a buffet. And we each have a plate, and we offer a plate there, the person who comes to, that we’re serving is the one who’s going to decide based on their own buying preferences, what they want to actually purchase. So really, what we’re doing is we’re providing options. So that’s all it is, we could have 567 different businesses, offering the exact same services in buildings that are right next to each other, and everyone will still have clients. Because it’s not about the service, it’s about the buyer. So just thought I’d just add that to that box, I think it’s really important for people who especially trying to build authority to not be scared about people who have a larger following, or who have got more traction than they do on, you know, online presence, you can carve your own lane. So I think that’s really important. And that also does actually lead to confidence. Because a lot of the time that we don’t show up, we don’t show up is because of a lack of confidence, because we’re too busy looking at what others are doing, how many followers they have, you know how many articles they’ve written, if they’ve got any letters before their name, if they’ve published any books, and we start to think of all of these things. And again, that’s why it links to mindset is because it gets into our head. And you know, the thoughts is what determines the action. So if I think something negative if I think I can’t do something, or think I’ve got too much competition, or I think I’m not good at sales, what that what happens is that I start to initiate a process which says, I have a feeling related to those thoughts. Those feelings then influence my behavior. My behavior will determine the decisions that I make, and ultimately the actions that I take. So if I’m, if I’m having negative thoughts about how I want to show up, the things I don’t want to do, I feel fearful, I feel scared, I feel anxious or, you know, apprehensive about things, it’s going to lead to actions that reinforce those thoughts. So imagine if you then turn around and say that I am actually confident in my skills, I know exactly what I’m doing. If I get an opportunity to deliver this work, it can be done. I’m getting more comfortable with the sales process. I’m getting more comfortable with showing up on social media. And just by having those more positive have thoughts, the feelings associated with those will then go through that same process to influence the actions. And what you end up doing is instead of sitting there thinking for hours on end about, oh, gosh, this is this sounds wrong, it’s, you know, someone’s going to read this and think, who are you? What are you doing? You immediately just saying, Well, I’ve sent it, if they have a look, and they’re interested, they’ll respond, if they don’t, it’s fine, I’ll just move on to the next one. And that builds confidence because it creates a habit of taking action, even when you’re unsure of the result. And you’re unsure if you’ll get the business from that. So having that confidence in yourself, and having confidence to be able to try, that’s where the confidence needs to lie. What have I done in my past? How many times have we actually failed? If we look back, we’ll probably realize that hasn’t been as many times as we think, Oh, and because we’re looking into the future about all of the failures we’re going to have, they are still not real yet. So actually, our failure count is probably very low. So I can be confident that whatever gets thrown at me, I can deal with, and then through that, I get clarity in the actions that I need to take, and therefore I take them, and that influences the kind of results that I get.
Alastair McDermott 21:17
This is really interesting. There’s, there’s a few things that that struck me in those two phrases. So okay, so first off, I was listening to, to another podcast called 2Bobs, which is David C. Baker, and Blair Enns, who were both experts in in the field of expertise, and selling professional services. And I think it was David C. Baker, who said, or maybe it was both of them, they said that the single biggest predictor of an agency’s success, when when they’re analyzing their clients who are typically agencies, the single biggest predictor of an agency success for them, is the confidence of the principal. And I thought that that was amazing that you know, that that was such, so, so clear, and so important. So I think that confidence is hugely important. The idea of the thought, determining the action, it sounds to me a little bit like whether you think you can or whether you think you can’t, you’re right. And that that phrase, the other thing that comes to mind is the concept of fake it till you make it. Because it sounds to me a little bit like that. That’s correct. So can we dig into that a little bit? I mean, what do you think about that phrase, fake it till you make it in terms of confidence?
Anthea Armar 22:33
Yeah, I think that’s quite an interesting, it’s an interesting phrase, and I get it, I get the concept behind there. Because what you’re saying is, if I don’t feel confident about something, let me pretend to be confident. The problem with pretending to be confident, is that your mind doesn’t really you? At what point? Do you actually adopt the feelings versus pretend to have the feelings, then there needs to be some sort of transformation internally, so that whatever you’re faking, can actually become part of your, your natural personality. I’m confident in what I do. And I feel confident in what I do. So when I speak to somebody about what I do, they can see the level of confidence versus let me say the kinds of things that seem like it might come across as confident. I don’t know, I think I just feel that that phrase, it kind of has a double meaning.
Alastair McDermott 23:27
Anthea Armar 23:28
And I think what it essentially is trying to encourage people to do is to take action, that’s how I see it, is it’s not necessarily to fake something that you’re you don’t know, it’s to remind yourself that you actually have it. Because this is the challenge is that nobody doesn’t necessarily have confidence, we have it, we just forget that we have it, because we’re thinking too far into the future about all of the things that are going to go wrong. And then we forget that we can we can deal with it. So that’s where we lose our confidence. Because we forget that we have done difficult things, we forget that we can deliver great services, we forget that we have things to say that people are interested in hearing, because we’re too focused on all of the things that can go wrong. So for me, I see that more as a case of just take the action. Because whatever you whatever happens at the end of it, you will still be okay. Hopefully you’re you’re in a position to actually learn from it and realize what could have gone better. And that shapes your character. And that’s what builds your confidence because the version of you today is not the version of you that is getting the results that you want. Therefore, something has to change. So every failure you then look at or or receive is not really a failure. It’s a lesson to shape your character into the version of yourself that will be able to get the business that you’re looking for the results you’re looking for, because you’ve gone through an actual process to build that confidence and get that clarity rather than pretend. It’s kind of like people who have surgery to lose weight. And it’s completely random example, but you you’ve gone through a process that’s got your result, but you haven’t gone through the actual transformation, the failures, the successes, the the crying, you know, the the early start all of those things that are actually needed to shape you, and get you into a discipline state that’s needed to do that. So it’s kind of like a shortcut. That’s kind of how I see that.
Alastair McDermott 25:38
Yeah, that’s really interesting. There’s a few different things for me to take from that. One of them is maybe I should be rewording one of the questions that I asked later on, so I’ll come back to that. Okay, so, so to to summarize them on confidence. So I’m trying to, I’m trying to basically reword what you said, in a very succinct way. If we, if we, if we act like we are confident, and again, I’m trying not to say the fake it if we if we fake it till you make it. But if we, if we act like we are confident, we will be taking the decisions that end up having those positive results. And so the confidence was the right way to act in the first place. Whereas if we act in a way where we’re not confident, we’ll probably end up proving that our lack of confidence correct. So yeah, I’m really trying to get away from that phrase, but yet it’s it’s kind of just jumping out. So. Yeah. All right. Do you have anything else to say about confidence?
Anthea Armar 26:45
Yes, I think just if we if we kind of, because we’re talking about summarizing. So if we look at it from a more practical aspect, confidence comes from a sense of self belief, right? So I’m confident because I believe that I can do X, whether it’s ride a bike, drive a car, you know, do abseiling. I know these all sports, what type of related but you know, that kind of thing. So what we need to do is remind ourselves that we can do things. We seem to have forgotten that our entire childhood experience has been based on learning new things. And we had to go through a process of doing things we didn’t know. So from a practical sense, the best way to start building confidence is to remind yourself of what you’ve done. So one thing you can do is make a list of all of the achievements that you’ve had. Make a list of every you know, it doesn’t matter what it is, it could be a small win, it could be a big win, whatever it is, you’ve graduated, you’re alive today, you lost 10 pounds, you had a you’ve got a successful marriage, you went to university, you sold 100 products, it doesn’t matter what it is, it’s that we forget that we can do things. So by having a list of things that we have done, and things that we have overcome, it reminds us that no matter what we’re about to face, we have been shaped in terms of our character to be able to respond to that. Because we’re here today, because we didn’t give up. So whatever happens next, we don’t need to give up, we just take that and overcome it. And then we can add that to the list of things that we’ve overcome. So if you write down 50, or 100 or 150 things, it takes a while to get to that 100 stage. But if you can write down 100, what they call 100 wins, it will boost your confidence because you’ve forgotten all of the things that you can and are capable of doing.
Alastair McDermott 28:50
Yeah, this is this is fascinating. There’s, there’s again, there’s a few things I’m thinking about in terms of confidence. One of those is going back to what you said, right, right at the start of that, about being being confident because we know that we can do things. And maybe, maybe I’m thinking about this a different way. But I think that for me, there’s also a confidence that even if it doesn’t work out that it will be okay. And I don’t know if that’s if that’s it will be okay, just a level down. You know, like, for example, I would be quiet confident to go and speak in front of a crowd about a topic that I’m familiar with, probably from doing hundreds of these podcasts, interviews and things like that, and just having kind of to repetition. But even if there’s the possibility of making a mistake, I think I you know, I, I believe innately that it’s recoverable so maybe that’s a maybe that’s confidence a second level deeper something so yeah, that’s that’s something that’s really that really interests me the the idea that you can be confident even when you think it may not go, right.
Anthea Armar 30:02
Oh, most definitely, and I have a quote is, just because it didn’t work out the way you expected it to doesn’t mean it didn’t work out. So a lot of things that we experience is because we have, or we are trying to dictate what the results should be. But if it’s about us, getting, we’re taking the actions and it comes back to the actions again, that the actions that we’re taking are leading to results, we cannot always control the actual results we get, because there are so many factors that are outside of our control. So even if it doesn’t work out in the way I expected, I went to deliver a talk. And I fumbled on my words. And I felt like it went horribly wrong. That doesn’t mean it didn’t work. It didn’t work out. Because what did you learn from that? What did you gain from that you’ve got experience, that means that you’re not going to spend the next one year repeating the same mistakes over and over again. So you may not have got the thing that you specifically wanted from that, but you still gain something valuable. And being able to recover from that is a confidence boost. So know that when you’re in a tricky situation, you can probably go into places, and know that whatever happens, you can recover from it. So I definitely think there is something in that it’s about you knowing yourself. And that’s why the wins are so important. Because it’s got nothing to do with anything that we do. It’s how we respond to it. That’s where our confidence should be placed. I can’t control the world, I can’t control what other people do. But I can control how I respond to both. So it’s in those responses that will enable me to move forward, stay stagnant, or take steps back.
Alastair McDermott 31:48
Yeah, and the other thing that strikes me is that there is a huge value in putting the reps in, which is a training analogy. But the idea of doing something more, and whatever that is, it could be a number of different things. But because you’ll have more experiences. And as you have more experiences of doing something, even if some of those experiences are what you might have considered to be failures. So for example, I did a presentation for for an organization, and only four people showed up. And it wasn’t because of the quality of the presentation that I was delivering. It was because of the way that it was set up for registration, that was a mistake. But I still deliver the presentation. And what that allowed me to do was it allowed me to tweak and improve my presentation. And it gave me a kind of like a free practice to a live audience. It was great. Because there was zero pressure for me. And I was able to test my slides and make tweaks and things like that I was able to have a kind of a more interactive conversation with the audience because it was so few. But I think that there is a thing where the more times that you’re doing something, even if you have what you might consider to be failures at the start, every one of those is another opportunity to make things better and to build that confidence. So I think there’s there’s simply an advantage in doing stuff more, as that makes sense.
Anthea Armar 33:17
Yeah, taking action. I think that’s that’s what you can summarize confidence as and doing that is taking the action. Because again, I actually think that confidence is linked to the perfection, perfectionism. Because we want it to be perfect. We want to wait until we take an action. And that one action is the be all and end all I’m going to do this one thing because it’s perfect. And that’s going to get me the result. But like I said, when you are spending all that time on the perfection, you’re missing out on all of the learning that makes it perfect in the end. It’s not our version of it, it’s when we put it in front of people, and they respond and they engage and they say, I disagree or I’m challenging that or here’s an alternative perspective, until you actually put something out there. It’s difficult for you to really be confident about anything that you’ve done, because like you said, that was your test, right? You’re you’re in front of the audience, it was tested. But remember, business is not about us. It’s about the people we serve. So until we put our products and services in front of the people who are going to buy it and gauge the reaction. That’s the feedback that we need to become perfect for them. For the ones who are interested in us and it’s never going to be perfect for anyone else who isn’t. So it is definitely about taking that action. putting yourself out there is which is you know what this is all about. Put yourself out there and just know that you have overcome difficult things in your life. Someone trolling you on social media or someone disagreeing with your opinion, are really miniscule in comparison to the things that you have achieved in life. So when you can actually realize the context of those two things, things I’ve overcome in life versus this very small thing that may feel very big at the moment, you realize that this, this isn’t as serious as you kind of expected it to be.
Alastair McDermott 35:16
Yeah. 100%. Okay, let me move on. Where does clarity come into all of this?
Anthea Armar 35:23
Clarity is about focus. And what I generally tend to understand is, you know, from from clients that I’ve coached, a lot of them are entrepreneurs. And the the kind of main challenge that they generally tend to come in as I, I want to do this, I’m doing all the things I think I need to do, but nothing’s working. And it’s because they don’t have clarity. And the reason that you need clarity I focus is because especially in the online space, it’s very easy to become distracted, not only by shiny objects that seem to look like they’re going to get you the result that you want, but from other people who may be further ahead than you. So there couldn’t be this tendency, if if you’re just starting out, you’re an expert in your field, but you’re just starting out in business and trying to put yourself out there, you may look at someone who is, you know, 10 steps ahead of you, and think, oh, my gosh, I’m not doing half the stuff that they’re doing. Yeah, that’s because they had nine other steps that they had to take before they got there. So clarity is important, because instead of focusing on where someone else’s, or the end, again, it comes back to what is the next step, being very clear about where it is you’re trying to go. Because if you have no destination, everywhere is the right place. But if you still want, you know what it is you’re trying to achieve, that becomes your everything, you do not distract yourself with that you’ve got your process, your your vision, what it is you want to achieve. And every action that you then take, helps you to get one step closer to that. So without the clarity, you’re doing things, you’re taking steps. But who knows, you could be in a labyrinth. And you have no idea when you’re going to come out where you’re going to come out, and what success you’re actually going to have.
Alastair McDermott 37:22
Yeah, yeah. I love that. And it sounds like you’re, you’re approaching dangerously close to talking about specialization there as well, in terms of focus.
Anthea Armar 37:36
Interestingly not. Interestingly not. It’s actually, it’s funny, because, you know, like you mentioned it before, niche niches, niches depending on who’s listening at the time, right? But there is this thing where, because there is a need to niche, this, this also becomes the problem. Because you have to be somebody who knows a lot about one thing. But what if you know, you know a lot about something that transcends multiple things, right, so what your niche is, doesn’t have to be that external thing you can say, right? I’m a personal trainer. So the only thing I’m going to focus on is, you know, basically working out and nutrition for weight loss, right? Very clear what it is that you’re doing. Someone like me, for example, I’m in the I’m in the business of improvement, which you think what, what does that even mean? So it’s people process technology. So on one hand, I could be training, another time, I could be coaching, another time I could be delivering the speech. I’m not niching down in training, coaching or speaking, because the focus is on improvement. I just happen to have multiple ways in which I like to, to, to be able to help people in those situations. So I guess where does that specialist that specialization lie? Or where are the where’s the niche? Is it in the industry? Is it in the person? Is it in the skill set? That’s what what ends up being a bit confusing to some people who are actually trying to figure out what it is that they want to do.
Alastair McDermott 39:15
Yeah, and we probably don’t have enough time to go deep on this. But yeah, I like I would say that you are horizontally specialized. And that. And I would say that, that that’s absolutely fine. And you could also add a vertical specialization to that as well if you wanted to, but obviously, you know, that’s, that’s up to you how you approach it. And then in terms of your service deliveries, it’s absolutely fine to have multiple different types of, of offerings, like like you’re doing combining different ones. And some people find that they prefer to just focus on one type of offering and sometimes turn that into a product type service, which then makes other parts of their business much easier to do. So but yeah, I don’t want to go go too far down that rabbit hole because we could, we could talk for another hour and just that. I I’m just really aware of time. So thank you so much for taking the time out of your day to come on here, I do have a few more questions that I want to ask you, including one, they’re going to reword slightly, what is the number one tip that you would give to somebody who wants to build their authority.
Anthea Armar 40:26
So I would I would actually say be present. So, you know, being being able to build your authority is about being seen. So what I would say is that be seen in the way you want to be seen, man, because that’s where the challenge is. So if it’s social media do that, if it’s podcasts, if it’s face to face events, if it’s videos, if it’s text posts, you know, whatever way that you feel comfortable in showing up, because it’s all about authenticity. Do that, you know, and ensure that people hear your perspective on things and don’t be afraid to be challenged. And don’t be afraid to challenge the norms either. So the more you can be present, and show you know what your thoughts are, you know, your way of thinking and challenge people and get people into conversation. I think that’s the best way to start to build your own kind of following and authority.
Alastair McDermott 41:23
Super. Okay, so normally, I would ask people about business mistakes or failures. But I’d like to ask you, is there a business lesson that you’ve experienced and what you learned from it?
Anthea Armar 41:34
A business lesson? Okay. I think I have them all the time. So I think one, one lesson that I’ve definitely learned in business is that, well, interestingly, it kind of splits into two is that you need to decide what kind of business you want to be. So there are typical businesses that, you know, this is what we offer, there’s a gap in the market, we’re going to do this, etc. And then there are also businesses who are very much have come to fruition based on passion, hobbies, and all of that kind of thing. And some of the challenges is because passion based businesses are trying to operate in the other manner, and it doesn’t work. So what I have learned is that it’s really important for you to be fully aligned to what it is you’re trying to sell in the world, how it is you’re trying to help, don’t just do it, because everyone else is doing it. Because this is how the mindset ends up being your greatest enemy, because it knows that this is not what you’re trying to do. So when I when I first kind of moved online, I started with weight loss coaching, because I could, but it wasn’t what I wanted to do or who I was. And what that taught taught me through you know, a lot of things was that it’s really important to stick with the things that you are genuinely passionate about. Because when you go through those challenges in terms of confidence, your mindset, the negative thoughts, the fear, you have so much of a reason to be able to push through them and work through it.
Alastair McDermott 43:10
Yeah, I totally agree with you. And I think it’s the difference between trying to swim against the current or swim with the current. Because if you if you’re trying to swim against the current, you just thought you’re not going to move. So yeah. 100%. Okay, let me ask you, is there a business book or resource that’s been important for you or that you’d recommend to us?
Anthea Armar 43:27
Yeah, I probably say there’s two one is “The Success Principles” by Jack Canfield. I read that I thought that was really, really useful. But I think the one that stood out for me a bit more was “The One Thing” by Gary Keller, it just changed my mind about so things, so many things, especially if you’re an entrepreneurial, you’re in business, when we have a tendency to need to do so many things. And what the one thing says is that actually, you’re doing too many things. Focus your attention on the thing that is going to make everything else easier, or to make everything else unnecessary. So slow down, be still figure out that one thing to do, and just kind of get on with it.
Alastair McDermott 44:15
Yeah, brilliant. And, again, I’m thinking about specialization, because that’s in the back of my head all the time. Okay, so is there a business book or resource that you would recommend or that’s been important for you?
Anthea Armar 44:27
I would actually say there are two. So what the first one is “The Success Principles” by Jack Canfield. I find that very good in terms of helping you to figure out what the kind of discipline you need to achieve success. But the one I found slightly more impactful in terms of practical strategies of moving forward was “The One Thing” by Gary Keller it just changed my perspective of so many different things because what it essentially teaches you is that in especially in business, we are so kind of convinced that we need to be doing. And so we have long to do lists. And we’re always busy. And we’re always trying to get things done. But actually, if we take one step back, we just slow down, figure out what it is that we’re trying to achieve. And then figure out, Okay, what’s the one thing that I can do that will either make the rest of the tasks that I need to do unnecessary or make them easier, and carving time out of your day to focus specifically on that without any distractions. And so that’s helped change in terms of some of the habits that I had, and how I use and focus my attention on tasks rather than trying to multitask all the time.
Alastair McDermott 45:43
Yeah, I hear you. And I’m guilty of trying to do five things at once. Particularly when I’m volunteering with community stuff and things like that as well. And I’m getting text messages about that and go to a meeting and then I’m trying to do three things for my you have to send an email to my list, record a video and talk to my editor, but you know, fixing a podcast interview or something, so
Anthea Armar 46:06
Alastair McDermott 46:07
Yeah. Yeah. There’s there’s trying to trying to keep on top of everything. Yeah. And I totally here with you on that one. So. Okay, well, last question. Do you read fiction? And is there anything that you would love and recommend?
Anthea Armar 46:21
So I am very much James Patterson fan, especially the “Alex Cross series”, I’ve always loved that, from what I read, kind of growing up as a child. And I’ve always liked his books, it’s just that kind of suspense, the action, you know, roller coaster of emotions that are quite gripping. So I generally tend to like, escaping from there, especially in business where we’re so focused on everything business, and it being so full on is really nice to have some escapism in a book.
Alastair McDermott 46:51
Yeah, I agree with you. And I kind of go a step further by reading science fiction and fantasy and that kind of stuff. But yeah, I think it’s really important to have something like that. And I kind of view reading books, almost like meditation, at least reading fiction, like meditation, because it kind of it pulls your mind away from the day to day and makes you focus on this one thing that’s disconnected from what you’re doing. So that’s my excuse for not meditating. So. So no, I’m with you on that. So I, I’m interested, I don’t normally ask guests about their backstory that much. But I’m kind of interested a little bit because I know that you’ve worked with Ernst and Young and Financial Times and Visa and a Unilever and Google and people like that. Can you just give us a quick summary of who your ideal client is and what you can help them with?
Anthea Armar 47:40
Yeah. So again, I’m in the business of improvement, which, you know, what does that even mean but ideally, what what I’ve realized, and I’ve come to realize, especially mostly since the pandemic is, you know, targeting, specifically business leaders or organizations who are trying to, you know, either recover from the pandemic, or trying to create more success and an impact within their business, but not through the traditional methods of trying to do more things, it’s actually by focusing on the people, you know, the people, part of it is who, so who is going to be the advocate for this business and help us push through, we need to understand, do they have the right mental health, or they’ve been supported in their well being and being able to do their jobs effectively? And then looking at the process side of things to say, how are we doing things? Is this the most efficient way? Are there ways that we can cut down the volume of work for people so that they can thrive and be creative and innovative and bring in more business for us without feeling overwhelmed? And then looking at the technology side of that to say, Well, what systems do we have in place that support the people who are performing the processes. So it’s really just, you know, looking at organizations, mostly small, to medium businesses, who have got maybe up to 250 staff, and are looking for, you know, other workshops, training, just ways to be a bit more people centered, and embed that into the culture, rather it be rather than it being a tick in the box. And so again, just helping through coaching, trainings, speaking wellbeing workshops, and all sorts, but it’s really just customized to what they need to help them help their people.
Alastair McDermott 49:26
Awesome. Yeah, I’m really interested in in, in the way that you’re working on what you’re doing. It’s fascinating. So as to where can people find you if they want to learn more?
Anthea Armar 49:36
So the best place to find me and figure out what is going on is at the website, which is www.amarkaigroup.com. Hopefully, there’ll be a link for that. And I know everyone knows the spelling.
Alastair McDermott 49:51
And then also in the show notes, yeah.
Anthea Armar 49:53
Okay, brilliant. And then there’s also you can connect with me on LinkedIn, and also Instagram and I use them my name for both of them. I’ve got a business page on there for the post that people can follow. But for direct connections, you can connect with me on LinkedIn.
Alastair McDermott 50:09
Yeah. And you put up a lot of stuff on Instagram. And he put up a lot of videos and things on there. So you should check that out.
Anthea Armar 50:14
Yeah, I’ve, interestingly, just similar to what we were talking about today is that that long list of things to do in terms of content, it’s not as up to date as it could be, but that will be the next thing that I’m working on.
Alastair McDermott 50:26
Awesome. Anthea, thank you so much for coming on the show.
Anthea Armar 50:30
Thank you so much for having me. I’ve had fun.
Alastair McDermott 50:35
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