Reading content written by experts of a particular field can be very informative, but at times, quite daunting and can make the gap between you and your goal feel even bigger than it did beforehand. Sometimes, we need someone to really understand where we are at in our journey from point A to point B, and to guide us in the right direction.
On the other hand, conveying information to people who are new to your work or ideas can be difficult, especially if you’re speaking to beginners. But if you have been in a similar position to your audience, then drawing on your own experience of growth in the area can add so much to your writing.
Why are people coming to you for advice? Usually it will be because you have something they want. So how can you help bridge the gap for your audience to move from point A to point B?
The easiest way is to have an intimate, honest and detailed encounter with a person at point A. You want to know everything about them, why they are where they are, and how they’re feeling and thinking. If you can source this from people in your audience, great, but if not, then be that person for yourself and document all of your own thoughts and feelings of when you were starting off. You can treat this as a real person, experiencing real things, and looking back you are able to mentor a former version of yourself. Ideally, you would journal from the very beginning of your journey and ask yourself questions like:
- What are my thoughts and feelings?
- How have I come to be here?
- What are my relationships with people and thing like in my life?
- What do I want to change? And why?
- What obstacles are standing in my way?
- What are any other challenges that are specific to my situation?
If you haven’t had the chance to do this when you were beginning, then remembering back can be just as useful, but the most important part is writing it down. This way, you can really see things from an outsider’s perspective and gain more empathy for the people you are writing for. There you will be able to address their specific challenges without any guesswork. It will even help in the tone you choose for your piece, and the resources you would recommend.
Essentially, the beauty of this technique is that you can be as detailed and honest as you like, meaning your future writing on the topic will be more accurate to those who you are writing for.
For example, you might want to write about tips in losing weight. If, in the past you had been the person wanting to read such an article a good starting place would be to write down who you were at the time and how you were thinking and feeling. How would you describe your relationship with food? What would you have said your biggest challenges were (mentally and physically)? The more detail the better since it could be those little things that make all the difference when connecting with your audience.
From this, strive to write the piece you always wanted to read, but could never quite find. In this way you can inject power into your writing and truly make a difference to other people’s lives.
Turn your past pain into something beautiful.