There’s a Jamaican phrase, “Good friend better than pocket money.” I’m so grateful to have divine connections that support and expand me….
If you haven’t read my previous post, you may be wondering where I’ve been. The short version is that “they” locked my social media accounts. I just got back a few days ago. (I tell the full story in my most recent blog post, “What Happened to Marlene Dillon Empowerment Specialist?”
It’s funny because I actually wanted to take a 21-day fast from social media (as I typically do in January), but lately my engagement has increased so dramatically that I was afraid to step away. One thing I learned over the years is that they reward you for posting daily and penalize you for missing days. Their goal is to keep people in the app longer so if you post consistently for 30 days or more they begin to funnel viewers to your page. But if you miss just one day, you can lose your audience. I’ve had it happen before and it was so deflating because I was being so consistent (which is really challenging for me dealing with #ADHD). I missed a day or two and I immediately was getting zero likes and comments. Navigating social media was so frustrating until I met my amazing friend, sister, and SISTAMoms business partner, Yvonne Livingston. She’s a social media genius. She taught me so much last year that my engagement soared.
I was so happy to finally have eyes on my content. I know I have great things to offer and it’s exciting to have people watching, listening, and engaging. I didn’t know how I was going to back away and do my annual fast. I didn’t want to lose that engagement. I wanted to keep my traffic flowing.
I am aware of the addictive nature of these apps. That’s why I do my annual fast and periodically take breaks to reset when I find myself going straight to the apps automatically without thought. If you’ve never seen the #Netflix documentary The Social Dilemma, make it a priority (and have your teens and tweens watch with you) because I was shocked at what I learned. I saw the impact personally, but when I watched that film (interviews of a group of former software engineers from the most well known social media companies—like the guy who designed the Like button sharing how they intentionally designed the apps to be incredibly addictive, and to mimic our mind’s natural needs for stimulation and a sense of accomplishment), I was floored. They use psychology to keep us constantly checking and scrolling. And it’s deeper than you think.
Despite watching this eye-opening film, I still fell prey to it because I was desperate. I’ve been working so hard at this business for so long without seeing results. I wasn’t connecting with my audience. I wasn’t making any money. After watching a million webinars and attending a bazillion free masterclasses, the takeaway was always that I need better content, I need to post on a regular basis, and that increasing social media engagement was the only way to ensure a successful business. So when I finally started being rewarded for my content and people who I don’t know organically began engaging with my work, I was all in. My engagement was up by over 1000%! And I’m not exaggerating. I was over here doing my version of Sally Field at the Academy Awards. “They like me. They really like me!” I was so happy. I was going to do what it took to keep that traffic flowing. I wasn’t even allowing myself to sleep until I shared some content on my page and replied to comments from that day. So can you imagine how conflicted I felt knowing at the height of my engagement it was time to back away for 21 days?!!!
I was trying to figure out how I was going to honor my intuition and need for connecting with my inner “higher self.” How was I going to distance myself… without really distancing myself?
Well… as they say, “God works in mysterious ways.” The Book decided I needed an empowerment hiatus and locked me down. I was locked out of my accounts for 21+ days. My personal page was disabled and although my @Marlene Dillon Empowerment Specialist page was still visible, I couldn’t access it. Many friends and supporters came looking for me and I found that out when I returned because people couldn’t send me messages. It was as if I just no longer existed. They took my presence away. It was hard, and I was hurt, because I love connecting with my people and I love the empowering work I do. I would never just leave my audience, at this point, without some type of message to say I was taking a break. So it was not voluntary. I didn’t block anyone (unless you did something to earn it. You know who you are. ). It was out of my control. I just got back a few days ago, and I’m so touched and grateful for all the messages welcoming me back. It is beautiful to see how many people noticed that I was gone and who truly appreciate my work. This experience has helped me to better recognize my value and to feel safe to begin to share more of my own content and focus more on sharing the messages I am here to share. I get to be more intentional with my content and stop catering to what I think the app wants me to do. Them telling me I share too much in other groups was a gift. No problem. I’ll share more of my own work in my own spaces. And as much as I hate email, Sunshine warned me this could happen, so I’ll be creating an email list so I don’t have to lose you again. When I post my blogs here, I also post them to my website. So if you want to ensure we stay connected, visit my website today and subscribe to my blog. You’ll be alerted each time I post. You can even send me a message from my website. I just put a link for that on my homepage.…
I missed y’all. I’m happy to be back. But you know I had to find a blessing in that time off. So let me tell you what I gained from the forced hiatus….
As you may recall, one of my favorite things to do is public speaking. I LOVE doing empowerment talks! However, due to extreme social anxiety, I have not been speaking publicly…. for years. The anxiety isn’t about the audience. I have no problem with public speaking. The anxiety is about booking… the selling myself part. That’s what terrifies me, and that’s what I’ve avoided doing for years. A little secret I’m going to share with you is that I only do speaking events I was invited to. I absolutely abhor and avoid cold calling like the plague. Speaking of plagues… I had just decided to press through this paralyzing fear and do it anyway right before the pandemic hit.
I am grateful to be blessed with phenomenal friends, with phenomenal callings, who provide me with phenomenal opportunities. I have friends who believe in me wholeheartedly—and I mean friends who believe in me more than I believe in myself.
Just prior to my unexpected social media hiatus, my dear friend Megan Barella—positive parenting coach and Happy Home Guide—invited me to speak to one of her private groups! And it was via Zoom! Okaaay… so, for me, video chat means booking-speaking-events-level anxiety.
However, one of the many things I love about Megan is that she honors my experience of life, while gently pushing me to do things she knows will expand my business. She offers empathy and acceptance, and allows me to show up in ways that feel safer for me. She agreed to let me come speak when I had enough time to panic and gather myself. She gave me a 3-week buffer. And I needed all of that time. She invited me to speak on a topic I’ve never taught to a group before. I’ve only coached people on it privately.
So my first time back speaking for an audience was during my hiatus and I got to teach on healing the inner child! It was such a beautiful experience. Her group was so warm and welcoming. I was amazed at how eagerly they engaged with the work and immediately began to connect with that part of them that so many of us don’t acknowledge. It reminded me why I love teaching and speaking to audiences. It reminded me of my gift for this and how powerful my talks always are. It reminded me that when I let go of the thoughts that interfere and focus on what I truly want to offer the world, that amazing things happen.
I am so grateful for Megan. I am so grateful for the warm reception from her group. And I am so grateful I said, “Yes.”
Inner child healing may seem super “woo woo” (unconventional and a bit spiritually odd) to you. I admittedly felt that way about it when I first heard of it. I didn’t understand it. I thought it was nonsense. I had no idea how powerful and helpful it’s been for so many people. However, after many years of hearing people talk of the benefits of healing their inner child, I finally hit enough rock bottom moments to get curious. I did a Google search, found a top rated book and Amazon and began my journey of learning. Now, I know for myself that inner child healing is legit and can be tremendously helpful for shifting beliefs that no longer serve us. I use it regularly and have made it a part of my daily life. I’ve been blessed to teach others and it’s helping them, too.
As a result of my speaking opportunity with Megan’s group, I am now offering inner child coaching! Currently, I am offering 30 minute intro sessions to help you get an understanding of how it works and begin the journey of connecting with your inner child!
If you’ve ever been curious about inner child work and think it may be helpful for you, I’d love to be your guide and support you on your journey. Sign up today for an Inner Child Intro Session with me, Marlene Dillon Empowerment Specialist!
I am currently offering 30-minute introductory inner child coaching sessions for ONLY $50!!! That is a very temporary price, so visit my website and get on my schedule!
Other coaching options now available. Visit my Coaching page to schedule.
Marlene Dillon Empowerment Specialist
Co-Founder of SISTAMoms