[The audio above is an accompaniment, not a reading of the words below. Click here if you can’t see the audio player.]
About 3 years ago, before I started writing publicly, I was in hiding.
Not Hollywood-style undercover special ops hiding.
A different kind of hiding. The kind of hiding you may very well be in right now.
I remember commenting on Chris Guillebeau’s website in the early days and spelling my name incorrectly (as well as not even using my last name). I was just Karl. I remember buying one of Chris’s first products and when I e-mailed him after purchasing I explained, “Good stuff! Been following your blog (and recently your twitter) for a short while. Commented on your blog recently (as Karl instead of my real spelling) … ”
That’s a direct quote from the e-mail I sent him on February 18, 2009. Since Chris is like me and archives everything I’ll bet he could verify this for you. I didn’t even send that e-mail from my real e-mail address. I sent it from a secondary account.
I remember feeling kind of dumb after sending that e-mail and thinking, “What am I hiding from?” I think I was hiding from my past. I didn’t want the people who knew me online before to know how much and how drastically I’d changed. I wanted my old Internet marketing days and my present life to be distinct and separated.
I thought catastrophe would strike if the worlds were to ever collide.
I few months went by and I thought, “Whatever, let’s do this!”
I launched RidiculouslyExtraordinary.com on July 1, 2009 and have been trying to be more open, available, and public ever since. When I felt like I wasn’t staying true to that I shut that site down and started over here.
I see people who are trying to “make it” hiding every day. Here’s the truth: you won’t make it if you’re not honest with yourself, your friends, and your fans. And if you do make it while you’re hiding (aka lying) you won’t feel good about yourself.
Hiding is stressful. Stress kills.
I submit that we should:
- Stop hiding from our employers.
- Stop hiding from our Parents.
- Stop hiding from our friends.
- Stop hiding from our husbands/wives/boyfriends/girlfriends.
- Stop hiding from the new people we meet.
- Most importantly, stop hiding from ourselves.
It’s a simple concept, and maybe it’s scary, but it feels good to stop fucking hiding.