You know what I have noticed about freelance newsletters or social media? When you’re on the right track, you get strong reactions.

The strong reactions can be to the negative or the positive.

The compliment messages are great.

It’s bliss.

And then there’s the not so happy side.

I have noticed that we’re often annoyed and potentially angry at what other people do online. I’ve had grown ass adults tell me that they are sick of hearing from the same people. Or that they can’t stand how someone bangs on about their business.

It usually comes down to a few things: 

a) They continue to subscribe to freelance newsletters they don’t like or have outgrown

b) They follow someone on Every. Single. Social Media. Channel. They’re surrounded by the same posts written 7 different ways. Drowning in the blog. Seeing it come back through the freelance newsletters. And then apparently, it’s the author’s fault? Ah…hmmmm.

c) They worry what will happen if they cut the cord. Or that they’ll miss out on something they do want. Or that they won’t have something to talk about with their online friends

It reminds me of a Ricky Gervais quote:

“People wanting things to stop instead of taking responsibility for their own emotions”. 

No one reaches through your monitor and pushes your hand onto the place listed as SUBSCRIBE.

If you’ve outgrown someone’s content OR you’d like to sample it on your own terms (instead of via every channel), it’s OK to do so. It’s also OK to make use of the bountiful features available on social media to mute or manage the content better.

I know this is probably going to get some people a little twisty but the person you are sick of hearing from has a right to conduct their business and their marketing in a way that suits them.

As a person watching, you similarly have the right to choose how far or even if you follow their content. You can unsubscribe from the freelance newsletters or the social media channels they own without having to worry about anything exploding.

You can admire what someone does on your terms. Some ways you can do that are: 

· Change the alerts you receive from freelance newsletters, groups, pages etc. to suit your needs

· Ask for the course or high-level alerts and unsubscribe from the day-to-day

· Pick one or two channels to follow someone and unsubscribe from the rest

· Clear out all the alerts and ask someone who still subscribes to let you know when the content you care about comes up

· Save the freelance newsletters in a folder in your email and open them when you feel like it, not as they happen

· Intersperse your social media threads with things that make you happy, curious, excited, inspired, learn stuff and feel content

· Recognise you don’t want to follow that person anymore and let it go

Be around people that inspire you. Follow the ones that make you feel like you can do the next thing or take on the next challenge. But don’t punish them if they aren’t giving you the personal attention you desire.

In my experience, people are flat out getting the courage to get their stuff out there to people in the first place. We have to be less critical and more accountable for whether or not we engage.

Also, allow people to grow up and mature with what they do. We don’t all get it right the first or even the first few hundred times. Oh, and if you’re getting something for free, especially if it’s valuable, remind yourself of that fact.

If it sounds like I am kicking your can down the road instead of to the person doing the marketing. You’re probably right. What I am trying to say is that we need to instill boundaries within our life to feel good about who we are. That includes being accountable too.

We can’t stop people from being who they are. But we can limit: 

Ø How often we intersect with things that upset us

Ø The size of the reaction elicited from us

Ø The damage we do it ourselves when we react

Ø The time and energy spent sweating the small stuff

Don’t compare yourself to someone else’s twenty miles down the road. And don’t sign up for punishment online or in your inbox. Unsub.

Oh, and if you are dealing with people that will notice you leave and are likely to comment on you leaving and you’re concerned about their reaction, don’t be. Think about that person’s role in your life relative to their influence. No one person can ruin your business. No one person can kick you out of professional circles or leave you in the cold. No one has the right to make you stay when you don’t want to. No one person can make you forget your purpose.

You don’t have to settle for that.

So, unsub and enjoy the difference.

Try this on for an exercise when you start getting mad at someone for doing their marketing: 

· Note your reactions to other people’s social media and freelance newsletters for a fortnight

· Ask yourself where those emotions and reactions are coming from? Is it over-exposure? Jealousy? A conflict in values? A situation-based reaction? Anything the content creator is actually responsible for?

· Write down three things you admire about their content to counter your feelings. Can you do it?

· If the same person comes up as a negative trigger, consider your mute and unsub options

You can also challenge yourself to be better at defining what you like. And what you choose merely out of obligation. 

Fill your feed with content you do want!

1) Share the content that inspires you

2) Let others know about the hashtags that give you the most joy

3) Ask for more of what inspires you from others

4) Commit to adding 3 positive and powerful content channels to your feed for balance

Want more ideas on freelance marketing or productivity? Check out our blog now. Or don’t. No one is forcing you! 😉

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