Marie Forleo introduction


I'm Marie

You have gifts to share with the world and my job is to help you get them out there.

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How do you build a business that stands out from all the others? One that turns customers into raving fans? Three simple words: building a brand.

We all want to express ourselves in a way that feels authentic and original — especially when you’re starting a business

But how exactly do you find your brand voice, and how do you incorporate into your business? What are the secrets to unleashing your own uniqueness when it comes to how you write, what you create, and who you serve?

Be a 1st rate version of yourself, instead of a 2nd rate version of somebody else. - Judy Garland Click To Tweet

Developing your brand voice can be challenging at first. But it’s not as complicated or expensive as you might think.

Below, you’ll learn how to brand your business using seven strategies that strong brands use all the time.

What Does It Mean to Brand Your Business?

Before you get carried away with fancy fonts and color schemes, slowww down. A lot of entrepreneurs think of branding as choosing a name, logo, website design, and a memorable tagline.

Those are all elements of your branding… but it’s so much more than that.

Your brand is the impression your business makes on your audience.

A brand is the soul of a business. It’s what transforms a collection of products and services into your business. It tells people what you stand for, and makes the right customer want to work with you and no one else.

Everything about your business contributes to your brand, including:

  • The products or services you sell (a.k.a. your business model).
  • Your personal history, values, lifestyle, philosophies, talents, knowledge, and personality.
  • The vision and goals you’ve set for the business.
  • How customers feel when they do business with you.
  • The way other people talk about your business.

Done right, branding makes your business memorable and turns customers into raving fans.

Why Branding is Extra Important if You’re a Small Business

Don’t let the business titans Nike, Geico, and Budweiser fool you — branding is possible for every business, no matter your budget or size.

In fact, I’ll go even further than that. To stand out as a little fish in your industry or the new biz on the block, small businesses need smart branding more than ever.

A strong, consistent brand voice builds trust with your customers, gives you an edge over competitors, and helps you create a loyal customer base who love buying from you and spread the word.

The good news? You don’t need a huge ad budget, professional branding agency, or snazzy logo to build a recognizable brand. These are nice-to-have shiny objects, but they are not your brand.

A winning brand starts with who you serve.

What problems do you solve for them? What experience do they have when they interact with your business?

When you’re clear about who you serve and how you want them to feel, that mindset will take care of the details. It’ll naturally infuse into your content, design, copy, and logo, regardless of how much money you spend creating them.

How to Brand Your Business So It’s Unmistakable

Worry you have nothing unique to offer your industry? Feel like it’s all been done before? 

Listen, no matter how many times an idea or creation has been shared in the world, sometimes it takes that one person expressing it in their unique voice, at the right time, in the right place, for it to actually make a difference.

Most ideas have already been done, but none of them have been done yet by YOU.

Think about it. No one is exactly like you. You’re a one-time meg-event in the universe! Making your brand stand out isn’t so much about what you say and do, but how you say and do it. 

The creative branding strategies below will help you pinpoint your unique voice so your business can stand out from the crowd.

1. Nail Your Brand Voice

Nine times out of ten, you’re not the only one doing what you do. There may be hundreds or even thousands of businesses in your industry offering similar products or services at similar prices for similar customers.

But don’t let that scare you.

Be curious and don’t be afraid to get creative. Perhaps there’s something different you could offer that no one else has thought of. Maybe there’s an underserved customer you could target or provide a little something extra. 

Want to break free from the typical mold and practice using your unique voice? In this MarieTV below, you’ll learn four simple ways to put your fresh spin on anything.  

View Transcript

Check out this episode on The Marie Forleo Podcast

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Every creator I know struggles with copycat tendencies at some point. Sometimes this comes from insecurity, and other times it’s part of the learning process.

Try these four strategies to stretch your creativity and find your own voice:

  1. Express one idea at least five ways. Challenge yourself to go beyond your first thought. By pushing for at least five totally different ways to say something, you’ll learn how to say things your own way.
  2. Draw on your own experience, not your research. Tell your own stories, use your own phrases, come up with your own analogies and metaphors. Telling your stories makes it impossible to look just like someone else, and it’ll help you develop a unique voice and content no one can copy from you.
  3. Don’t look at other people’s stuff. What you consume is bound to seep into what you create. While you’re creating your own content, put away other people’s books, stop reading blogs, and say what you want to say.
  4. Use the BFF reality check. Would you say this to your best friend? If you did, would they say “WTF? Who are you??” That’s a strong sign you’re trying to be someone you’re not. If it passes the BFF test, there’s a good chance you’ve found your voice.

2. Come up With a Business Name That Speaks to Your Soul

This is one of the trickiest steps entrepreneurs face. How do you express what your business offers, who it’s for, and what’s special about it… in a name?

Figuring out what to call your business comes down to three factors:

  1. What customers in your industry will understand. 
  2. How you want the company to look and stand for. 
  3. Where you want to take your business long term. 

You’ll find 14 fun ways to generate names for your business here — or you can start with this exercise below:

Business Name Generator Exercise: Make a list of words associated with your product or service — a thesaurus or OneLook Dictionary can spark some creative and silly ideas. Think about the objects, feelings, and ideas people associate with what you do. Now use those words and ideas, and write down at least 20 potential business names.

You’ll be surprised what you can come up with if you sit down and do this exercise. Once you finish you can test it out on your friends or potential customers, and see what feelings it evokes for them.

Remember, what matters most is that your business name fits your long term vision of who you’ll serve years down the road.

3. Find an Underserved Audience

If you’re trying to make your business stand out in a crowded space, one effective and heart-centered marketing strategy is to offer products or services to the customers your competitors have ignored.

Consider the problems your potential customers face that aren’t being solved by the products or services that already exist.

For example, if you live in a city and teach guitar lessons, the area is probably saturated with guitar teachers of all styles. You could offer online lessons to reach people in the suburbs or rural areas, who have fewer options or can’t travel to get to in-person lessons.

You’re still in the same business as your competitors, but by giving your service and branding a twist, you can reach a completely new customer. That cuts down your competition and lets you truly be of service to your target audience.

4.The 4 P’s to Unique Brand Messaging

Still struggling to find the secret sauce that makes your business unique? Let’s talk about messaging. 

Thanks to the internet your customers probably see hundreds of businesses just like yours every day, promising the same amazing benefits. Rather than reinvent your entire business model, tweak your brand messaging to show how you’re different from everyone else.

When you’re finding it hard to sound unique, the best place to start is with what I call the four P’s:

  1. Purpose — your reason for being: Don’t just say what you offer, explain why.
  2. Principles — what you stand for: Do you make your products without common harmful ingredients? Offer services without unethical practices common in the industry? Tout it!
  3. People — who you serve: Which words would your customer use to describe your offering to a friend? What benefits mean the most to them?
  4. Pisses you off — frustrations about your industry: What’s missing in the industry that your business solves?

By infusing your P’s into different parts of your copy and design, your brand will be unforgettable to all the right people.

5. Look Outside Your Industry for Inspiration

If you want your business to stand out, don’t look at what everyone else in your industry is doing or saying. Looking at your competitors’ websites, programs, marketing, and content for inspiration pretty much guarantees that your website, programs, marketing, and content will look just like everyone else’s — even if you don’t mean to do it!

As a new business owner, you might think looking at your competitors is the best way to learn what you’re supposed to do. But it could actually hurt your business.

Instead, draw inspiration from the places that light you up outside of your business. That’ll guarantee no one can do it exactly the way you do.

I recently used this branding strategy for my Everything is Figureoutable book launch. There are a lot of entrepreneurs and personal development companies who launch books all the time. Instead of looking at what everyone else was doing, I took a note from the entertainment industry and had the most epic book launch ever in New York City. I highly doubt anyone is going to copy it — unless they want to spend weeks practicing this dance routine for their book launch.

Create something that only you can create. 

Stay focused on what you want your business to be about, not what everyone else is doing. Bring in your other passions, philosophies, and interests to give it your personal stamp.

Because again, others might run the same kind of business as you — but no one else is YOU.

6. Showcase Your “Real” Personality… but Not Necessarily All of It

“Authenticity” is a bit of a buzzword right now. Everyone wants an authentic brand with authentic messaging and an authentic personality. I do too! But let’s be real, humans are complicated. I’m not sure if I want a company to be completely authentic with me all the time.

Sometimes you may have to rein in the potty mouth that takes over when your inner Jersey girl is sick of everyone’s sorry-ass excuses. Or limit the number of well-placed mankinis you use in a show. Or let go of the fact that some clown biscuits are criticizing you online for having fake hair when, in fact, it’s 100% yours.

Not just me? Yeah, I feel you.

Listen, our multiple personalities are like the facets of a diamond. You have to get clear on which facet of your diamond to showcase for your business. 

For you, that might mean going full mankini on your audience, but you could totally keep that onesie to yourself and still create an authentic brand. To decide how revealing you want your business to be:

  1. Get clear on your dream. How big do you want the business to grow, and what boundaries are you willing to accept? Do you want to make it to network primetime, or are you okay with late-night cable? Any facet of your personality is authentic, but some might limit the directions your business can grow. 
  2. Get clear on your audience. Who do you want to reach — and who are you okay repelling? Which facets of your personality are in alignment with your ideal customer, and which turn them off?

Any part of yourself that you incorporate into your business is the real you. And that’s what makes your brand unique. Remember that not everything about you and your business will be the right fit for everyone. So when in doubt, showcase the parts that will help you connect with the people you most want to serve.

7. Be Open to Unconventional Design

No one is ever bored into buying. Our eyes and our hearts are drawn to new, interesting, artful, colorful, and joyful designs.

Great design makes us feel something. We might not know what it is, but some brands just speak to us and make our hearts say, “Yes please!”

Just like your copy, your design represents your voice and vision. It lets potential customers know what you’re all about — and whether you’re the right fit for them.

When you land on that logo, web page, or book cover that reveals the soul of your brand, you’ll feel a full-body YES. You’ll know the thrill customers will feel when they discover your business and know they’re in exactly the right place.

Don’t be afraid to be unconventional — just be you. Your design should reflect how you want to be perceived and how you want your message to live in the world.

Fair warning: You won’t get the design right the first time.

The look of a brand goes through iterations over time. Your needs and your message will change as your business and the world around it grow.

Be willing to go on that journey. Don’t get stuck in the design phase trying to get everything just right — it never will be.

5 Examples of Small Businesses With Outstanding Branding

My business brain rarely turns off, so I notice a lot of branding do’s and don’ts in the wild. Here are five examples of branding I’ve fallen in love with over the years from brands that just get it.

1. Poo-Pourri: Don’t Give a Crap About People Who Say You Stink

This may not be the first time you’ve heard me talk about how stinkin’ amazing this brand is. When a company focused on poo leaves you feeling courageous and joyful, it’s worth a second look.

Poo-Pourri made a big splash in the marketplace when its “Girls Don’t Poop” ad for its toilet spray went viral in 2013. The company brilliantly set its sights on a single customer, not giving a crap about everybody else, and smearing the delight and humor of its brand in every piece of its copy and creative.

2. Marine Layer: Be Refreshingly Real

I stumbled on this San Francisco–based clothing brand a few years ago, and I walked away filled with branding inspiration.

Marine Layer is refreshingly real. They’re not afraid to be quirky, awkward, and flawed out in the open, and it doesn’t detract from their professionalism or success. They poke fun at the challenges in their journey all over their website.

The company is also totally honest and transparent about its products. It’s proud that most are made in California, but it’s also upfront that it works with overseas companies for some styles, vetting those companies for ethics and sustainability.

3. Help Scout: Know Thy Customer

I’ve never been happier to be on any website in my life than when I landed on Help Scout around midnight a few years ago in my search for a customer service platform. They know their customer so well, I thought they were tapping my phone.

From the second I landed on their homepage, I knew what this company does and who they are. Their copy reached through the screen and touched me right in my pain point. Even their CTA was clear and perfectly directed at me, their ideal customer.

Help Scout is boldly not for everyone‚ so much that they recommended a competitor right on their homepage. This is a perfect example that there’s always room for you — as long as you know what makes you unique. 

You don’t have to be the first in the market or even the biggest. 

You just have to know the customer out there who is crying and tearing their hair out, waiting for your company to come and save them from all the sameys that don’t understand their problems.

4. Muzzle: Show, Don’t Tell

Within two seconds of hitting Muzzle’s website, you know exactly what problem this brand solves — even though its home page has just one sentence of sales copy.

The free Mac app lets you silence embarrassing notifications when you’re screen sharing. It doesn’t need sales copy to tell you why you need it, because it does a brilliant job of showing. 

Notifications pop up on the screen with the kinds of messages you’d be mortified to get in the middle of a work presentation:

  • Facebook: “Jen added 32 photos of you to ‘BDSM’…”
  • Norisete: “Ugh, we are NEVER doing blow again.”
  • Calendar reminder: “STD Test tomorrow”

Seriously, I spent at least 10 minutes just watching these gems pop up. And then I told everyone I know, “You have to see this website!”

5. Artifact Uprising: Drive Desire

Artifact Uprising sells high-quality physical prints from your digital photos. What’s brilliant about their branding is that they know that’s not what they’re really selling.

This company is really selling a feeling of connection.

The images and copy all over its website show how meaningful it will be to get photos off your device and into your life. When you can connect with that kind of desire in your customer, you don’t need to waste time talking about photo specs and paper weight.

Let Your Business Brand Shine

Ultimately, how you brand your business comes down to three simple factors:

  1. What you do.
  2. Who you want to reach.
  3. What you envision for the company.

Simple. Set aside your beliefs about what a business should be, and embrace who you are and what you alone can offer the world. Your brand lies in that beautiful space.

Bringing your awesome dreams to life in the world in a way you’re proud of will take time, work, and patience. Your brand is bound to change over time as your business grows — and that’s okay.

You’ll know when your branding feels right. It’ll make your soul swell and renew your excitement to do the work — and your customers will feel that excitement, too.

Now, let’s turn this insight into action.

Take 5 to 10 minutes polishing a piece of copy you’ve written for your business so it aligns with your brand. Look at a sales page, an email, a tweet, anything. How can you inject a bit of your story and personality into it to make it something no one else could write?

No holding back. No playing small. Put your faith in yourself into action. You’ve got this.

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  1. Hey Marie,

    I really think that sharing your own stories is the most powerful way to communicate and get closer with your audience.

    Another way to be original is to talk about what you strongly believe in. For example, even though I am very into fitness, I strongly believe that people who do NOT exercise, are NOT lazy (which tends to be the most common perception).

    When I start talking about why people should NOT feel guilty for NOT exercising…and explaining all the reasons that this is so, I cannot stop the passion from flowing out! Plus, there is no-one else saying the same thing as me (most fitness people say “there is no magic pill” and stuff like that that make people who are not yet exercisers feel even more guilty for not taking care of themselves…), so I cannot be possibly copying someone else..!

    So that’s my advice – when writing or doing any other kind of creative work, think what makes you passionate about your topic. Then, voila! You sound like YOU!

    • Stephanie Vogt

      Great share Maria! I wholeheartedly agree.

      • Oh, I like the way you are thinking!!

        • Abundant perspective, Maria.
          Let PASSION guide the way!

    • Thank you for the time and tips Marie, I got some good juice outta this one 😉

    • MamaRed

      So true my dear, so true. When we release that passion it is amazing!

      may your day be igKnighted with passionately powerful possibilities!
      MamaRed Knight

    • A pleasant, relatebled and most of all informing video to the voice finders. I will definately use this tool to sharpen my fashion psychology website, and elevate my brand to the next level!

  2. Jesse

    Great video, as usual! Love #1 especially, and great quote too.

    P.S. Where is that dress from?! It’s hot!

    • hi Jesse!

      Marie’s dress is from 🙂

      • Thanks Elsa! That dress IS hot!!

        • Kassandre

          I am a new subscriber and, only recently, became aware (and hooked) on Marie’s videos, blogs, and YouTube Channel. In fact, my husband and I are looking to expand our professional reach and use the videos’ great content. That being said, I also always look at Marie’s outfits and adore them. Does she list where she found the items, anywhere?


      • Serena

        Elsa, you are amazing.

    • yes! amazing dress!

    • David

      It’s not the dress that’s hot – Marie makes it hot!

  3. My signature style has evolved so much over the past few years. Lately I find myself tweeting about my jewelry line and promoting it on facebook as if I were talking to a couple of friends about it. So my promotion/marketing style has evolved from a cut/dry style to a more relaxed familiar/ friendly vibe.

  4. I think the best advise, is to listen to your inner voice. I am very opinionated- that is to say, I don’t disagree with others for the sake of disagreeing, but, I am not timid and don’t have an issue with expressing myself. I definitely have found my own unique voice, so, this is a non-issue for me, but, I can see how it could be a stumbling block for others. Your blog is almost two? Send me a Birthday reminder. 😉

  5. Marie! Keep those videos coming–they’re so great.

    When I’m writing content, I like to wait til I have the urge to write. When I write when I’m inspired like this, it comes out very naturally. I pretty much never attempt to just write on the spot, because I’m sure it would be arduous, painfully slow, and not sound right in the end anyway. I just keep a backlog of content going and then keep editing it all a little at a time so that in the end a blog post is ready about every week.

    • I have recently started doing the same thing. But I hit a bump in that plan when I no longer had time to write only when inspired. So I started writing 3 pages everyday to stoke the fires. I told myself to take a break from the blog to re-align with what my purpose and goal was for writing the blog in the first place. Now I have a ton of topics and I am starting a healthier backlog.

  6. This is great Marie – this is so hard for a lot of people.

    What I get my clients to do is write a manifesto using their words – what they stand for, what they are against – usually defining what you hate about your industry can help you establish what you stand for.

    Another powerful tool is to ask people around you to define you in 5 words – very often there are a lot of overlaps – see how that translates into your writing and brand story – then fill in the gaps.

    The best friend technique is really important – I always encourage others to find ONE person who they talking to and tell it like it is. It helps with the kind of language you use. Most people struggle to write because they feel they have to write in a certain way when in fact the type of writing we learnt in school should be called “death by writing” – write like no one is ever gonna read it – or like you are singing in the shower and no one can hear you.

    Whatever you do you need to sing it loud and proud.

    I also totally agree on cutting out the consumption of other’s writing – it’s so debilitating – self doubt creeps in and your voice gets lost. If you must read, read something totally unrelated to your industry, go to an art gallery, read art books, draw, watch cartoons, spend time with children etc – all these activities will help nurture your creativity and stop your voice being silenced.

    It’s not an overnight process but it gets easier the more you do it.

    • Ameena, I love what you’ve said, they’re really great helpful tips which I will put into practise. Thank you!

      • Ameena Falchetto

        You are welcome! Would love to know the results!

    • I can attest to the magic of Ameena! Have been her client for a while now and her method is solid. Thanks Ameena 🙂

      • I love what you do too Robin, I’ve just looked at your website…beautiful…your really do have an authentic voice…genuine, I can feel it…

        • 🙂 Robin is really special – she worked really hard to get the real HER out and she did it fabulously!

        • Thank you so much Susan and may I say, ditto! 🙂

    • Ameena,
      “What you hate about your industry can help you establish what you stand for.” Love this!
      While I feel confident that I have my own voice, this sparked my interest, or struck a chord, or rung a bell, ruffled a tail feather (see how many ways I just said that same line? Ha.)
      Thank you for sharing. There are definitely aspects of the industry I work in that really bother me…so I appreciated your comment and offering something else for me to consider and think of when exploring my own voice!

      I also stopped reading so many others who blog/write about similar or the same topics and interests that I do. I couldn’t agree more that it only sets you up for self judgement and criticism. Marie was spot on about “there are more ways then one to say something.” Yup!

      Now I’m off to create and write unique ways to say something about nuts and backbends. lol.

      Thank You Marie and Thank You Ameena!

      • Love how you put Marie’s exercise into practice!!

        Sometimes having something to go against really forces you to bring the real you to the table – sing it loud and proud! 🙂

    • Romy

      Ameena, just signed up for your newsletter, LOVE your style. Your illustrations are absolutely gorgeous and I look forward to diving into your posts. Thanks for the tipps, will do a manifesto. I’not yet online, but getting there, speaking and w riting my truths.

      Marie, thanks for great information. I definitely have to stopp checking out ‘competition’, it totally sucks the life and confidence out of me.

      • Ameena Falchetto

        Thanks Romy! Get your manifesto written. You can change it later but getting clear now will help build the pieces of the puzzle for your business!

        • That is great advice Ameena, I am currently setting up a blog and have been doing exactly what I shouldn’t have but knew it and hence did not promote yet, so I’m back to the drawing board, speaking from the heart.

          Thank you 🙂

          just joined up also, great site 🙂

    • I really love the ‘manifesto’ trick «usually defining what you hate about your industry can help you establish what you stand for»

      We get sometimes emotionnal about things we hate so we can found what motivate us in life.

      Thank you for the trick (And by the way, I love the illustrations on your blog!)

      • Thank you Evelyne!

        Emotions are emotions, good or bad – channelling them to get a positive outcome is key!

    • madelain

      Ameena, I just wrote what you said on a napkin in a restaurant. Reading this off my mobile… And now I’m going to tweet it.
      “What you hate about your indusrty can help you establish what you stand for.” Schweet!

      Loved this vid.

      I find that as a yoga teacher, it was hard steering away from yogi’s I admired to find a particul and unique voice. But this question that you just asked help me to define me and how I’m different in the following ways:
      1) I can’t stand the term ‘starving yogi’. I’m all about earning my worth and time.
      2) I can’t stand how yogi’s talk about connectedness, calmness, and using terms that would be lost and inaccessable to newbies and way over the top. So I teach my yoga linking the science & physiology behind all techniques I teach. Not that yoga teachers don’t know the basics, only that far too oft it’s left out.


      • Sweet Madelain! Glad that helped – it’s not what many would encourage but I find it brings the best results – find your nemesis – find your calling. What ever works when it comes to find what makes you, YOU! It does help get clarity and I think you’re already well on your way to singing loud and proud! Keep rocking and boo to the idea of the starving artist/yogi!

        • madelain

          Thanks! I even went so far as to call my yoga business “Mad About Yoga”, so you can imagine the play on words can be quite fun. It works pretty well, and others tend to never forget it. I can’t wait to meet the rest of me! As I follow a direction even when I’m unsure, more of me is revealed and more I descover what I’m passionate about and therefore my niche & also my calling.

          I will rock it thank you very much.

          • LOVE it! Mad about Yoga! Excellent energy that does kinda go against the whole ZEN of yoga … follow your calling 🙂

    • I love this Ameena and I 100 % agree. That’s what I do. I just launched my blog and have always danced to my own beat so it wasn’t hard for me to express my voice but I did think about school and thought “maybe I should take a writing class.” People always comment on how funny my posts are and to keep it up. Now, I just trust my intuition and write and just keep doing it my way. But what about all the typos and editing that need to be corrected? Do you play other people to read your work first?

      • Hahaha- PAY not play- This is exactly what I am referring to!

        • Your site rocks Caroline – NO – I don’t have someone proof read my writing. It’s far from perfect but then perfection isn’t something we can attain whilst preserving our voice! Marketing copy throws grammar and “correctness” out the window! Keep going!

    • MamaRed

      Oh, love that…write like no one is ever gonna read it. Such a powerful tool…thanks for sharing it!

      may your day be igKnighted with passionately powerful possibilities!
      MamaRed Knight

    • Farah

      Thanks a lot for your tips. Very “mind” opening, hehe!

    • That is great advice Ameena, I am currently setting up a blog and have been doing exactly what I shouldn’t have but knew it and hence did not promote yet, so I’m back to the drawing board, speaking from the heart.

      Thank you 🙂

    • Hi Ameena

      I loved your points and especially the one about the keywords. Never thought of incorporating my personality/brand like that so now I have something I can work with :o)

      I also love the fact that you and marie mentioned not to read other people’s blogs because I don’t yet most bloggers I know read everything out there!

      Thanks for your tips!

    • Loved this video Marie! ??
      And thank you Ameena – that’s a great tip thinking about what you hate about your industry to say what you really stand for!
      I’m changing directions in that I’m now focusing on creating my own paintings, but I have been a contemporary art dealer for over 20 yrs and my thing has always been to be really open and transparent with clients, to find they what they truly love and connect with, to avoid “The Emperor’s New Clothes” which is a really big thing in the Art World! And to only focus on beautiful uplifting art – why someone would want to hang another person’s pain on their wall, I really DON’T get!
      So thank you for reminding me all about that – it’s something I did instinctively, but never really articulated!
      I will now think how it applies to my own art! THANK YOU! ?

  7. Love the quote, here’s one of my faves: “Be yourself: everyone else is already taken.” ~ Oscar Wilde

    I think they key to creating your own voice is to really get to know yourself. And at the same time, be witnessed by others. This could mean taking a survey of your colleagues/clients/friends to find out what they think your strengths are, what your style is, what unique voice / perspective you have to offer. Sometimes others can shed light on the brilliance that hangs out in our blind spot, or that we take for granted. Embracing that feedback and using it in your branding (voice, visuals) can be enlightening and give you great forward momentum. Also, speaking from experience, hiring a designer or copywriter who knows how to ask questions and interpret your answers – to get to the bottom or who you are and what your message is can be incredibly helpful.

  8. Carmen

    OMG!! Love your video! You’re truly creative. I couldn’t stop laughing when you did your #1…great!

    Besides from the super format and shooting of the video..again, great content! thnxx

  9. Hey Marie

    Love your work! Always inspiring. I am working on my Brand and voice at the moment. Lots of fun.

    Fiona 🙂

  10. For me it shifted when I realised that what is totally normal to me, can be a great insight for someone else.

    I then started writing down the things that help me to feel balanced and happy and shared these online. Guess what: people LOVED them.

    Now it really feels like I am just writing to a friend and everything flows. It’s very easy to write when you can just be you 🙂

    Love your #1 tip, am going to play with that!

  11. Great video…loving your hair. And, great topic. It seems so much out there is just: cookie-cutter-copies-of the other. Kinda boring. YOU are extremely unique-thus your following.

    To find your own voice: look really hard at yourself-what your life is like, how your home is decorated, your clothes, the way you ‘style’ your life, use your time and who you hang out with. What attributes and principles do you gravitate towards? What’s the aesthetic? Dig deep to determine what makes you happy?
    How does it do that for you? Then, you can figure out how to communicate that to others.

    Staying unique? Keep trying, trying, trying and then stick with what makes you the happiest. Get feedback from your ‘tried-and-true’, make small adjustments and trust in yourself.

    Thanks again for working so hard Marie.

  12. I totes agree with all of this!

    I have been watching Marie’s vids for the last week and the thing I realized that lacked in my e-businesses was my own unique voice!

    I was too busy trying to write to appeal to other e-business owners and what they said was right or wrong. In the last week I did a total revamp of my Bridal Dresses website with my voice and whaddayaknow.. already traffic stays longer and clicks my affiliate links!

    Thank you Marie (and all the visitors in the comments section!)

    Elise x

  13. I think I paid attention to your video once I could stop looking at your dress. Wow!

    Thanks for the top tips again Marie!

  14. G’morning ladies!

    As a coach myself, I could totally get stuck in the whole “but everyone has already said what I am saying and it’s not new” part of life. And while that statement may be true, it’s never been said by me before (except for the parts I soapbox about in which case everyone’s heard them before!)

    Once I realized I can say the same thing as someone else, but in my voice and from my perspective and it’s cool, in fact, its super cool, then I was all good.

    Quite liberating actually! I’ve been working with a few clients who have hired me to be their marketing coach on this same topic as of late. Great vid and loooove me the dress.

    xo Johanna

    • Simone

      Great point Johanna, I have recently felt stuck – as a nutritionist what do I say that no-one has said? That video was fab Marie thank you and you rocked that dress 🙂

  15. Hi Marie and everyone!

    Great advice, Marie. I’ve been blogging on a personal site for ten years and have a well developed voice there but when I started blogging for my professional site, I left that behind. Best advice a copywriter gave me was take the voice from my personal site and USE IT on the professional one. After all, it really IS me!

    I was scared to do that thinking I wouldn’t come off well but that is so not true. I’ve always had the ability to write so that those who know me can almost “hear” my voice as they read. I just had to be brave enough to do that for the world to read (and not just my three blog readers! LOL).

    Best advice I know? BE WHO YOU ARE, period. You will attract those who resonate with you and your readers will love it.

    Thanks for your advice – it’s super.

  16. This is a great video, and one very needed right now.

    One of the ways that has helped me with my own writing “voice” since college is to find pieces I wrote, no matter how long ago, that I really liked, and re-read them. Even old emails and letters can work if you are just starting to create some content.

    Re-familiarizing myself with my own voice always helps me slip back into it when I need to write new goodness. 🙂

    Cheers! 🙂

    • Loved this, Rebecca. I save old emails and letters too, its very helpful.

    • Brilliant advice.. I will do that.. have lots of diary entries etc. that I can tap into.


  17. Thanks Marie.

    It’s so important to write in your own voice, but it can be hard indeed when you have just read something that inspired you.

    Great tips to rewrite it in you own words, just until you know this is you speaking.

  18. Marie – what a wonderful email we just received from you! so glad to be part of it!
    And thanks so much for the great tips – i am off to challenge myself writing the headlines in different ways now!!
    what I find useful about unleashing my voice is: don’t try to be clever. Just keep it simple, keep it true. Truth is what resonates with me and as a result with my audience…

  19. Such great advice Marie! While I’ve always used my own voice, I often worry that my content is already out there somewhere and spend time researching to make sure my content is unique. Given that I create videos and content for health and fitness, that can often be A LOT of research. I love the idea that my information is useful simply because it’s in my voice and coming from my own life experiences. I focus on keeping things super simple and super effective, so people actually get results. Although the info might be already be out there, it could be confusing and ineffective. I’m already inspired to write my next blog post. Thank you!

  20. Dana Barash

    Hi Marie,

    I am just as honest as possible as soon as I can be and I try not to let my thoughts get the best of me….. I share with my friends and loved ones. Because of this I can think better my minds not as jumbled and I’m free to think like me!!!!

    With admiration,

    Dana Barash

  21. Aaron

    Hey started writing then watched the vid and realised some of it was covered.

    The #1 thing is ATTITUDE. What is your background, what are your stories and how does that inform your attitude to EVERYTHING? I say this as a lawyer who is also a stand up comedian, so I have had to really work to break out from being politically correct (or boring!) and be honest.

    If I had to take one technique it would be to write down the 6 stories (even just in a one line format) and work out what those mean for me as a person and what that makes my attitudes. Those attitudes should pervade my communications.

    I think there are 2 big blocks that get in the way of people being open in business:

    1. the risk that some people will not like you; and
    2. the thought that people do not want to know you (i.e. you’ll reveal too much information)

    to the first, heck there will be some people who wont like you WHATEVER you do. However, if you aren’t true to yourself then one of those people who will not like what you are doing will be YOU… and you have to live with YOU 24/7. If a competitor or client doesn’t like your personality they can opt out – you can’t opt out of you, and you’ll forever be self-censoring and killing yourself, rather than killing it.

    As for too much information, well they may not want to hear everything but if you think people dont want to get to know you then you are wrong.. and they’ll come over but wont stay. People want to know, like and trust the people they work with, and that takes a bit of being out there.

    It’s really tough as you have to feel ok with yourself to be out there, and there will be times when your inner voice will say you’re a fool for being too open/too loud/ too whatever. and the answer… “So?”

  22. Aaron

    OHHHH and final tip.. which I have read a HEAP of times…

    get a dictation machine. Dictate your blog posts. Write up the recording – you’ll see a much more direct style that people like and which connects more.

    • Thanks, great suggestion! I’ve just started using Google docs dictation – incredible! ?
      Wish I had discovered it years ago!

  23. Love the dress Marie! The tip on sharing your own stories is the one that resonated with me the most. It’s easy to share information in a way that makes it sound like everything else we’ve heard. However, by integrating stories with the lessons we learn in business and life, our insights become far more unique.

  24. Hi Marie ~
    Great video! And I LOVED the interview with Kris Carr last week 🙂
    I’ve noticed with clients coming out of the corporate environment (myself included!) that many of us have spend years learning “company speak” and squashing our own voice. It’s both scary & liberating to re-find your own voice & message. I think it takes some time & some playing around to get comfortable. I love your exercise of coming up with different ways to say the same thing & finding what works for you. It seems silly to have to practice your own voice, but it’s like we’ve been doing color by number for decades & someone has suddenly given us free reign to paint whatever we want… holy shit! Like I said, liberating & scary!

    Love ya girl!

    • Yes, Rachel! Corporate speak has been my language for many years so it’s been challenging to let my creative juices flow once I get home from the day job. It seems I need to have extended periods away from work before my fun voice comes out again so writing the same thing se real different ways is a BRILLIANT idea. Fortunately, the tides are turning and a more casual tone is starting to be accepted (dare I say, expected?) when corporate businesses talk with customers through social media channels so I’m eeking out my voice a little more during the day, too. Yes, I get it when you say it’s LIBERATING! 🙂

      Love the video, hair and dress Marie! Keep the inspiration coming! And thank you for reminding me of the importance to chillax and be me!

    • Jane

      Just wanted to say how much I love your website! Great colours, imagery and design.

  25. I have been working on this A LOT lately.

    I have found 2 helpful keys.

    #1: Site/Reference when I get an idea from someone else (just like all of the years I spent reviewing the literature in academia/ clinical practice.)

    #2: Write consistently every week, and now I’m doing video week in and week out.

    The more that I create content, the more that my own voice begins to really bubble to the surface. Sometimes you just have to practice in public, as Marie says in her email. I completely agree!

    Thanks for your words of wisdom! I love our first tip! And, also… to put it all away when doing your own content creation.


  26. Such good stuff here! I am creating an online Spanish course — an email course, if you will (you get a lesson a week and regular emails from me) — and right now, I have five lesson testers, all friends of mine. This has been enormously helpful, not only for their feedback, but for speaking to them in my own voice. Whenever I write an email, and it sounds “phony” and “not me”, I know to delete it and rewrite it in my own voice, because I would be embarrassed to sound like that to them!

  27. So true that “there’s nothing new under the sun,” but what we each bring to the material is our unique take/perspective/experience. I’ve found it challenging to get past my fear of writing about what others have already written about, or give advice on my blog that others have already given, but I remind myself that no one comes to this thing — whatever it is I’m writing about that week — with my unique set of experiences; I know that my lens is unique to me.
    I actually don’t worry about “voice” so much — the cure for that is to write enough and express yourself enough, week in and week out in your business communications, until your finely honed voice shows up authentically. Though I do have to check myself on that from time to time to make sure I’m “keeping it real.” ; )
    “When you are yourself, you have no competition” — I didn’t make that up, it’s from another biz mentor, but worth repeating here.

  28. Ummm. Shit Marie you look ridiculously hot.

  29. Helen De Nobrega

    Hey Marie,

    Just decided to become an entrepreneur at 47! Women like you inspire me! Woot. Woot. Yaaaaaay me. Ballsey-moi.

    My biggest obstacle : Thinkin “They ain’t gonna like the real me”. Then I do the comparison thing…. “Ooooh, she’s younger. She’s got a book. She’s got a PHD. I’m low tech”.

    That’s when I flick on Marie TV, or Danielle Laporte and say “Hey Helen, you may be oldah, but the world needs wise-mommas too!!.

    So I’m doing it. I’m doing a pitch to an entrepreneurial support program, where they’ll pay me to make mistakes!! I’m not letting no money stop me.Half-assed is in the past!! (Getting fired from my day job helped).

    Thanks Marie for everything you do. You can flip a bad day for me into a goood day! If you can be yo fabulous self (Lady Gaga & all), then I can do it toooooo!!!!

    Helen De Nobrega
    Toronto Canada

    • 🙂 reading your post made me smiiiiiile all over!
      Go Helen!

      • Yay Helen! Way to go.
        I am trying to get my art practice together after raising four kids. (well, still raising one ..) I am currently,…fifty one. Yikes…But then I thought too, there are so many women out there like myself. Just like you say, ‘the world needs us old ,wise (hmm) mammas’! I still have so much to give and so bloody much to paint..I am looking forward to this new time in my life, and I am more excited than ever about my art. The other thing Helen is…IT IS NOW OR NEVER… So lets get going:)

  30. Love your dress!
    My tip for when I get stuck is to step back from the Mac, grab a notebook and pen, go for a walk and find a quiet spot to write. I write most of my directly on the computer but sometimes writing it by hand helps the ideas flow better and it feels like I am writing a letter to a friend.

  31. Ashley Anne

    I really liked this. I must say my struggle is not so much finding my voice, but that my voice is a potty mouth and I don’t always feel that I am taken seriously. Onward and upward anyway though!

  32. …Marie…1st of all…you ROCK!!! love all your words, videaos, everythings….well when I first listen your interview with Kris Carr I was completely touched because right now after sooooo many years of inner searching I give the change to my voice to be listen from me and it is soooo loud and honest that other poeple also listen to it….thanks a lot for this wonderful channel of PURA VIDA and Good good goooooood Vibes…many greetings from Germany, Osnabrück…<3

  33. Hello Marie,
    I think that it is important to share our story because it is unique for sur, but it is very important to learn from others the contents, especially in the beginning when you are studyng a new subject, but we have always to write with our words without copy.

  34. Perfect timing that this came in my Inbox – I have just 20 minutes ago finished a really special coaching session on finding and using my own strengths …. and getting MY stories out there … not being afraid to tell my story for fear that other people might feel uncomfortable, sad, anxious or whatever.

    Is ironic that something I care about so much for people is Permission to be and express who they are … (my blog is called Permission to be YOU) and yet whilst I’m happy to plant my stake in the ground and take a lead on some things, I can be very nervous about revealing some others.

    Tis so true that there is nothing new under the sun – and yet there can be so many perspectives and freshness in how you tell it. I loved the 7 different ways of saying the same thing. Very clever. I reminds me of what freelance journalists have to do when pitching a story to different publications, different media etc. And offers hope that my take on stuff, my story will resonate with and be a salve to those who need it.

    Thanks Marie!

  35. Lucienne

    When I intrinsically believe in what I have to say, write, create, brand …. my unique voice finds me and burst forth with passion and enthusiasm… then it comes down to trusting your very own brand of uniqueness. BE QUIET my little doubting (WTF) voices!

  36. Hi Marie,
    Love the continuation here of last week’s video with Kris. As a yoga teacher I’ve learned that finding your own voice is HUGE. There are so many teachers being pumped out of programs that teach from scripts and each class is exactly the same.

    When I first started teaching, my mentor told me that I shouldn’t play hip hop in my classes, and I cracked too many jokes- so nobody was going to take me seriously…. but I knew if I was drawn to original teachers, then I would find students who enjoyed my class too- Thank god I was right.

    When the market in my area started to REALLY become saturated, I found not only another voice, but developed a whole new yoga system to stand out- again, I’m grateful people have been diggin’ my Xen Strength Yoga with Weights program- and thanks to doing bschool last year, I sold over 1,000 copies right from my dining room table.

    I’d say that whatever industry you’re in, don’t be afraid to be who YOU want to be- not who you THINK you should be- there’s probably too many people like that already…

    Thanks for being such an inspiration Mama! xoxo

    • Danielle, today is my lucky day! Just stumbled upon your website, yoga and weights, wow. sounds like exactly what I have been praying for. Can’t wait to dive in and explore your site this evening. And congrats for having the courage to be you and swim against the stream.

  37. Hi Marie,

    I love your Tuesday updates! This was helpful to me….especially your advice about writing authentically and don’t let yourself get bogged down by reading other’s material to write your own. Prior to starting my site, it was easy for me to write from the heart. I’ve been feeling a bit stuck latetly. This video was truly helpful.

  38. In my business, I specifically work with creative entrepreneurs to help them share their true voice with their right audience, so imagine my surprise seeing this video today!

    When I work with clients, there are three “P’s” that I talk them through to help them communicate from their true voice: Practice (ya gotta practice so you feel comfortable being vulnerable as yourself), Presence (which comes from enthusiasm, excitement, passion and lessons learned), and Platform – finding the right mode of communication that resonates with how you do business.

    The four action items you mention, Marie, are great tools to help with Practice and Presence. It takes a little experimentation for folks to find their right platform(s).

  39. Good strategies for how to consider a range of responses and find her true voice.

    I would add: If you don’t feel right on the edge of discomfort — vulnerability, from sharing your inner thoughts — you may not be sharing how you really feel.

    Your true voice comes from being the person you want to be.

  40. Love, love, love this vid.Yes, difficult in a not so original world but so, so important. Marie explains perfectly how it’s done. You go girl! BTW, that dress ur wearin’ rocks!

  41. Venisha

    I’ve noticed growing up that music and singing and writing lyrics has always been a part of me whether I’m actually working on it or not. So when I talk about something…I always seem to reference a line of a song to whatever the topic may be. So I decided Im gonna go with it when building my brand! Wish me luck!

  42. OH MARIE! You are TALKIN’ my language! 🙂 This is what I try to teach my clients through my class and all my work. I think the biggest advice is to understand what a brand truly is:

    When someone has a problem, YOU become the solution. When someone wants something, you help them get it With style.

    So many of us get caught up in the style part that we forget to first be of service and DO OUR THING. The more that we focus on our clients and what they need, the less time we have to worry about copying other people, obsessively following what they do or idolizing their work. Once most people focus on that, the branding comes NATURALLY. It comes up when in a zinger you said when you talk to your clients, it comes up when you are writing YOUR blog posts.

    We only have time to be ourselves. I specialize in helping people with finding their brands! So fun when someone realizes that they have all they need to be awesome already.

  43. Deirdra

    Thank you so much Marie! I have been struggling with just this issue and now I feel free to be me….and free to share my message without feeling like a copycat. You ROCK!!

  44. Each of us is here to contribute our own unique spark to the world.

    We’re here to do that in order to inspire the world, and also to fulfill our mission and purpose in life.

    If you bring forth that special spark that is within you, that sacred spark will explode into wild and unknown treasure.

    If you ignore the spark you have inside, that spark will smolder and slowly kill your passion and juiciness and the world will lose out.

    Wow the comments section is smoking hot today!

    • Laura Hames Franklin

      Love that

    • So true Robin. Just signed up for your newsletter and can’t wait to explore your site this evening. LOVE chakra work and yep, a girl needs sacred bling.

      • Thank you Romy! I am glad you agree 🙂 Looking forward to seeing you.

    • I love you Robin – you are so right – these words are something I’m going to hold with me forever! You are so right – it takes it all to a new level – we ARE here on a mission and the minute we realise it the clearer we become on the idea that we need to get this sh*t started/done!

      Always an inspiration!

  45. Marie, I totally get what you are saying although I’m not a writer. I feeling like a copycat and a failure in my business right now. I am on the search for a product I will feel passionaltely aligned with. One I am so jazzed about I will put my full energy into and build a business around. Feeling stuck in a transition is paralyzing. Can you help me?

  46. Fabulous advice as always! I think because I’m an avid reader (both online and off) I sometimes run the risk of sounding like someone else, most likely the person I’ve most recently read. The thing I try to do to combat this is write my blog posts/newsletters/whatever, then walk away and leave it, and come back to edit it later. This could be a few hours, a day, whatever. It really seems to help me sortof “gut check” myself and be sure I’m coming off as who I authentically am.

    Also, when I was recently trying to write an ecourse, I knew what I wanted to say, I just could NOT get it to come out. So, instead of sitting at the computer for hours, I decided to “talk it out”, meaning I just recorded myself speaking what I wanted to say instead of writing. now I do have to go back and organize it, but this really helped me to be sure I keep things authentic to how I express myself AND helped me over the hump to get the information out. Now I’m just working on the final edits and recordings, and I can release it 🙂

  47. Laura Hames Franklin

    Hey Marie and lovers 🙂

    My biggest transformation came when I started to uncover what “the voice” is, where it’s coming from & how the multitude of ‘confused voices’ make it impossible for people to move past the struggles of ‘trying.’

    To become more you, it’s essential learn who you are, and what you’re not.

    And it’s not a thought. Or definition. It’s a feeling.

    There is an endless sea of opinions and advice ready to sweep you away, define you, put you in a box.

    When you can step out of that illusion, you can unlock the infinite energy and YOUnique configurations that is constantly creating YOU and there can be no copy.

    Your body holds your keys… It’s your telephone to the YOUniverse. It holds the untold secrets of ancient wisdom and advanced science. It has infinite brilliance, energy & insight.

    It’s nature. Nature is unique. But the same. Same same but different. Just like us.

    Rather than pushing yourself to speak ‘differently’, challenge yourself to access a deeper wisdom and clarity to higher and higher resolution. In every part of your being and then speak from that.

    Update your body’s ability to receive the clearest channel of YOUness. Learn what you are and how you actually function and your voice will be so freaking real and powerful, because it will oooze from every cell in your being.

    The body never lies. It can’t.

    My biggest challenge? Feeling infinity and putting it into the limited words of the English language 🙂

    • Rosa


      Thank you, your words are very true and is what I needed to learn/hear.

  48. RIGHT ON MARIE!!!!! Being INAUTHENTIC is the most exhausting thing we can do. When we are being AUTHENTIC we feel energized, inspired and joyful. I find our emotions to be such powerful guides. All we have to do is tune in and listen to them!

  49. My greatest stumbling block to releasing my voice is speaking in a way that is received by my local community. I’m clear on who I am and what I do, but to put it in marketing copy that is compelling has been and is a huge challenge for me.

  50. Hey Marie
    Great insights and advice as always! What you said about NOT reading others blog posts/ articles and just channeling your own message/ writing from the heart is soooooo true in my experience.
    It’s tempting to get distracted looking at what others say on the topic you want to write about, perhaps checking in to see if your thoughts and ideas are ‘validated’ but this only distils your own unique voice. Also- and I think you’ll agree with this- it’s so much EASIER to just write from your heart-just let it all pour forth and work with what you have. You’ll be able to get a lots of quality content out there a lot quicker and be more productive in your business and as all of us online business women know- content is king baby! Keep up the fab vids

    Beth xxx

  51. First of all, you get more stunning with each video and I agree with the others that dress is HOT!

    What I love about your videos is the practical tools and humor you offer. Your honesty is refreshing and what you say makes absolute sense.

    Thank you for supporting and empowering women in all the ways that you do!

  52. It can be very easy to think that if you sound like someone you admire who has a successful business, that your business will mirror their success.

    Big mistake!

    Businesses are successful when they offer valuable services, are unique, filling a gap in the market and most importantly–connect with their audiences. No one else can be you, talk like you, or have the same insights you have.

    Just work it out.

  53. Hi Marie,

    As always, you hit the nail on the head!

  54. Hey.
    Brilliant advice. And our brains *are* spongy! I have “this” and a guy I was seeing at the time did also. We were sitting at a coffee shop and he started talking to a man with a very heavy dialect. As the conversation went on, my guy at the time, started to talk like the guy he was speaking with. It was like osmosis and so obvious that I could not help but giggle my britches off. I can feel when I do this–and it’s completely not on purpose–but to see it happen through someone else is kind of crazy. So, yepper–get away from people when you need to speak or write or even think for yourself.

  55. I find that my own voice comes through when things are pumping and going well, but I falter and start looking elsewhere for inspiration when a few things throw me off and I begin doubting my direction. By having a few “success memories” at my fingertips, I’v!e found it is easier for me to get back on the hell-yeah train and stay focused. Thanks for the reminder!

  56. I LOVE and use #2 ALL THE TIME. Maybe it’s because it’s something I learned in B-School! 😉

    Using my own experiences with tarot and my personal life and blogging about it makes my clients feel like they KNOW me… because they DO! And they’re much more likely to work with me when they feel like they know me. After all, you don’t want to work with a stranger, do ya?

    The best blog posts I write are the ones that tell a personal story… the most popular ones are the ones where I teach something about tarot using my own experience listening (or not listening and getting a smack-down from the Universe!) to the cards, or telling a funny story about everyday life as a psychic interacting with family, friends, and my boyfriend.

    Finding my voice has never been a problem for me because I’ve been drawn to writing for a very long time… it’s my medium in a way that nothing else is. And you bet your bippy that you can tell the difference between when I’M saying something versus when I’m emulating a certain writer’s style: it sounds disingenuous. So I don’t do it anymore!

    • It always makes me happy, when I “meet” tarotistas:) Will dive into your site asap. Isn’t tarot just fantastic for storytelling? Love it.

      • Romy! Nice to “meet” you too! Tarot is fantastic for EVERYTHING. It is such a versatile tool… and certainly something I didn’t realize about it when I started using the cards at sixteen. I just wanted to “tell the future”. It is SO MUCH MORE than that. Hope you love my site as much as I do! I’m so proud of it! When are you launching yours? The URL sounds so intriguing!

  57. I have to agree that drawing from and sharing personal experience is a great way to sound unique. My biggest obstacle is self doubt that my own voice is worth listening but I’m working on it. Thanks for sharing.

  58. Hey Marie!
    First – I Love your top in this video – awesome!
    Second – Did you do something a little different with your hair? It looks great, too – a little more vibrant and rich than in the past few weeks.
    Okay – now to your question about expressing my real voice:

    I find your tip #2 to be MOST helpful when I write. What is my own experience? Even if I am writing about something I read somewhere else, what is my own experience of it – what happened when I tried it for myself, or what did I notice when I saw a close friend try it?
    When I am writing, if I don’t feel good, I am working too hard…trying to say something like someone else would say it, or say it like I think other people want to hear it. My agreement with myself is: I create and write in a way I understand, in a way I feel good about inside, that expresses who I really am.

    The super cool part about being authentic when I write is when I go back and read what I read, I see what a fun person I am. I think, “Wow – this is fun!”

    My next area for improvement is in my speaking. I will have the same amount of confidence in my speaking and presentation abilities as I have in my writing. The more I interact in person with real people, the more naturally my authentic voice flows.

    Thank you for posting this video!

  59. Cyndi Smith

    Another great video with AWESOME advice Marie! One of the things I do is talk about the topic I want to write about into a recording device, and then writing it down as I play it back – it really helps me use my own unique voice in my writing. The passion I feel when I’m talking about a topic then shines through in my writing too!

  60. Wow! So incredibly timely and what wonderful advice. So happy to have stumbled upon your site. I am in the process of ‘rebranding’ and I love all 4 tips. I get stuck in research and must-make-it-perfect mode and my content ends up sounding like a mash-up of all my mentors! I will try #3 today. “Just a thesaurus!” Number 1 is brilliant. We all share a lot of the same ideas in my business…but we can all express them differently. Love it. I am a big fan of #2, as well. Our experiences are unique to us and will shape our voice, point of view and knowledge so that we all have something special to offer in work and life.

  61. I usually find when dealing with clients to not be afraid to let my humor guide the way. It becomes more of a unique way to express myself because even though the way I look at things is different, humor is universal and all people can relate.

  62. Love you, girl!

  63. It was hard to refind my voice after being in an internship where you had to do exactly what they said for six months. It took a while to remember what my big plans were. With some big dreaming and meditating I was able to remember my original plan. I should have listened to that nagging in my stomach sooner.

  64. Jane

    Another great Q&A Marie, it really made me think about what is holding me back in developing my own business. I have been trying for a couple of years to start my own business but I keep bottling it and finding things to prevent me from moving forward. One of those things has been to compare my abilities and knowledge to those of the people whom I admire. I worry that they may read my ‘stuff’ and think that I am talking rubbish, or that I might actually be wrong or inaccurate.

    From now on I am going to try and write without self-limiting beliefs, I am going to write in my own voice and answer any comments or criticisms that may come from what I have written. Afterall, these will be perfect opportunities to learn more.

    I’m now going to go and get my website sorted ready for all this new content.

  65. For me its about talking from a place of vulnerability and authenticity. I speak about how I feel and what I believe about the topic.

    My best feedback and responses are when I act from my heart and put myself out there!

    Its me , as me !

  66. I love this! So much things are popping up that is reconfirming that I should be doing what i’m doing for my blog and business! LOVE IT! Thanks Marie

  67. STILL loving your stuff Marie! I really took to this video as I am currently getting ready to go under a branding face-lift! I am constantly reminding myself and keeping myself in check on how to just be myself, and these four tips really help with that. LOVES IT!! 🙂

  68. Seriously, girl! You make my head explode with your awesome ideas! I wish so many other business people took the time to find their own voice and rock the success. It’s amazing how many still suits and dull personalities wonder why they’re not making the green.

    Personality sells! Well, it does if you have one! 😉

  69. Don’t let other people’s opinions sway you. You can listen and most certainly you can use constructive criticism, but beware of their belief systems and the fears.

    Be YOU, be professional, but make sure you aren’t toning yourself down or conforming to someone else’s expectations. So, again be YOU 🙂

    Love you Marie….one of these days things will fall into place and I will meet you in person. I really look forward to that.

    Have a gorgeous day dear ones,

  70. Lisa

    I’m so glad you present this in such a fun way – I’m constantly reading info type content and yours sticks with me because it’s fun and visual.

    Even though I could never mimic your voice if I tried, this is a good reminder for me to lighten up and let loose a little where it works.


  71. Thanks, Marie! This is very helpful.

    Your first step reminded me of something I learned to do in writing and in problem solving – brainstorming. Whenever I need to write anything or solve any problem, it’s always helped by a session of brainstorming everything I can think of to do with the topic. It reminds me of things I know, but may have forgotten in the pressure of trying to get something done.

  72. This is great but what I am finding is that I’m starting to get my voice but I am embarrassed to be so revealing. Not to strangers who might read my posts but to people I already know. I tend to be outgoing externally but actually quite private. Is that silly? Am I the only one? It stops me a bit from inviting people I know to follow me.

    • Hi Sandy,

      I’ve run into this issue in the past too. I’ve found it helps me to define my boundaries for myself. It’s similar to what I do in other work situations. You can share yourself and still keep certain topics private.

      I think rewrites help a lot with that. You can write something first as it comes to you, then go back to tweak it so you’re only revealing what you’re comfortable with. Just because it’s your voice, doesn’t mean you have to reveal everything.

  73. I’ve been sitting here writing about a similar topic, and I decided to take a break and check my email–and realized I hadn’t watched Marie TV yet today (gasp!). How cool that we are on the same wave-length! I totally agree with your advice for helping people find their voice, Marie.

    As a writing instructor, I have given similar advice to my students over the years. Even outside of school, people are concerned with being “right or wrong” because some people equate critique of their writing as a critique of their personal style. This causes them to hold back from revealing who they really are in writing. It takes “getting permission” from a caring person who is also in-the-know for them to express themselves in a way that honors their truest self.

    Bravo to you for helping get the word out! 🙂

  74. Great video Marie!

    I find that literally speaking my articles into a recorder is one of the best ways to tap into my authentic self and find my true voice. It gives me the ability to hear the unqiue style I say things and feel free to express my true thoughts, feelings and opinions. Then when I type up the recording I find it’s easier to stay true to myself and not be worried that I am trying to impersonate anyone else.

    Thanks for being so inspiring 🙂 take care!

  75. Delighted to see voicefinding as your chosen topic today! My favorite way to find my own voice and to help others in this ongoing process is to use our physical voices to connect with voice in the sense of mission, power, etc. I start with my belief that creation is incomplete until each of us adds our own unique song. Then I use the tools of singing and songwriting to help people embody the wholeness that is theirs to bring to the world. Each of your points of advice feels connected with how I work with my voice clients. Here’s how they line up for me.
    1. Play around with different parts of your voice, explore all the different ways you can sound/feel.
    2. Sing from the inside out. Sing by sensation, not by how you think you are supposed to sound.
    3. I use my unique voice to help people sound like themselves not like me.
    4. Sing as a way of communicating your own truth to actual people; even if you are performing in a huge stadium, you’re singing TO the people, not “at” them.

    Blessings on all your wonderful work, people!

  76. I go back and read my journals to remind myself of my voice. If you aren’t being real in your journals then something’s very wrong.

  77. So coincidentally I was just talking to my husband about this just before I watched the video! I noticed that a few people were copying great masters such as yourself Marie in terms of their website designs and copy. There is a fine line between inspiration and just plain copying! I am a 4 on the enneagram and therefore the value of being unique is one of my highest values. If you are not unique then who the heck are you. I believe in making my own stamp on the world. To me copying is cheating though I understand why other people do it when uniqueness is not their primary value and they don’t have a vision, its easy to borrow someone else’s and move on. To me nothing feels better than having a unique vision and manifesting it into the world. That’s one of the things that excites me in life! Thanks for another great episode!

  78. I used to write very dryly. I think I’d even put a librarian to sleep with my copy from last year. But watching you for over a year and seeing a few others be awesome and real, I decided to give myself permission to be myself. I’m still not fully there, but adding common words like “yo” and “awesomeness” (and other related made up words), using abstract movie and music references that most people won’t get and generally writing copy how I talk to a friend has made a huge difference. I still don’t have much of an audience right now, but honestly, I don’t mind while I’m still working out my voice. And the biggest awesome is… wait for it… I am now my inspiration for writing in my voice. I go back and read old posts and I like who’s talking. So it spurs me to continue being me. Thanks for the interview with Kris, I had no idea who she was. Pretty kewl chick!

  79. Jenna

    yay! I love you!!!!

  80. Your video is perfect timing. I was writing my blog post yesterday and was SO tempted to google my topic and check other’s opinions on the matter. I’m proud to say I resisted the temptation and found as I forced myself to just sit and write that something came out of me that I wasn’t expecting. Must be my own opinion on the matter – who knew?

    BTW, thanks for the laugh. “Take me to your mentor” in alien-speak made me laugh out loud!

  81. Jo

    Hey Marie

    One of THE MOST nerve wracking things for me was to write a blog….. I was beyond nervous! I was so scared about how I was going to sound and how I was going to come across. I even had a friend (?) put me off my game as her opinion was, if you weren’t perfect at grammer etc, then you shouldn’t write….. But, with persistence and passion, I now love it! One of the best ways for me to write and to get into my own voice is to actually right in long hand… Yep, good old fashioned pen to paper. I find that it slightly slows down my thoughts and connects me on a deeper level to what I really trying to say. I then type up and tweek a day or so later, add & edit as I go.

    This weeks blog was actually inspired by you Marie…. Its all about the mutli-passion.

    My advice would be, just start writing. It doesn’t have to be perfect. Its all been said before, just say it your way.

    Love and leafy greans, Jxoxo

  82. I suffer form reading to many other blogs and articles. However, when I do feel inspired a write I truly believe it sounds like me. I loved the tips you gave in this video. SPecially the one about trying to express an idea 5 different ways. I usually pick up ideas and as I start writing, I remember anecdotes from my own life that somehow relate to that idea. It makes the text original and it sounds like me. I am committed to writing a post a week, I’ve also started a Facebook page and have been sharing with friends. So far the comment I get is, this is so you!

  83. After last week’s interview with Kris Carr, I started to notice that I write a certain way when talking to my mom (we’re super close). I’m a little quirky and I play with words and punctuation with wild abandon.

    I went back and looked at emails to other friends and family and found out I DO have a voice!

    My biggest stumbling block is that I’m quite a good mimic, so when I read other people’s stuff, it REALLY seeps into my consciousness. Hmm. Maybe I need to turn that problem into a power…mimicking can be really fun! And funny!

  84. I love this video! It’s something I struggle with on a regular basis and your tips were great – especially #1 & 2. I have found that every time I draw on my personal experience I get much better results.

    Keep the awesome tips (and super cool videos) coming!

  85. Marie!

    Loving to hear that you are just back from Sag Harbor! One of our best retailers “Provisions” thier manager Rita is such a fan of our Organic Body Polish. I hope you have had the chance to try it

    I am in B school WHoohoo! am I loving it, my new web site is just about to launch. This Video is great.
    SOOO true, my BFF is a very talented and smart lady and she knows it ALL. It seem that her purpose in life is to be right ( often time, at the expense of making others feel somehow wrong). Indeed I find that I surround myself with people who are smarter than me. It’s interesting, yet. .

    It has been a constant challenge to find my own voice, even though I have been making and selling Organic Personal care for 18 years now,and I am certified three ways to sunday, selling in a dozen countries, I mean seriously I have some real street cred in this business. Still, I feel timid sometimes, like what I have to say is less interesting and important.
    As I launch upon my new B School Supercharged Web presence and blogI will try all of these tricks to keep myself REAL!!
    Thanks Marie! you are an inspiration!


    Still I often feel like the

  86. Lara

    Thanks for the down lo on finding our voice. In my current sales career I have seen a tremendous increase in new business since I stopped taking myself so seriously. I have more energy, the client is more engaged and we can be creative together which promotes a sense of urgency to order TODAY. We are here to BE.. We are Human BEINGS. When we share our true essence, it naturally draws people and opportunity to us. Life becomes easy. Thanks for making it so easy and FUN. Love YOU. xo Lara

  87. Terry


    My favorite tip is: “when you’re ready to write content, don’t use any references.” I often automatically use the internet to find the answers or get ideas. You just shared a great reminder to get unplugged and allow the message to come from the inside out.

    Thank you!

  88. Great video Marie (I agree, you are seriously rockin’ that dress!). I think drawing on your own experiences is an awesome way to bring it back to you. Last week after watching your video with Kris, I unsubscribed from a lot of newsletters . . .more time doing, less time reading other peoples stuff!

  89. Jonathan

    Marie, Thank you! Great insight, practical tips & straight to the point. Does make me think though how much even our own voice is the result of life circumstances, culture and values on an unconscious level, maybe my own voice is just what feels or comes most natural in the moment???

  90. Hi Marie,
    Thanks for what you said about putting away reference materials. As an artist I completely overwhelm myself with them! This will really help me clear the mental confusion on a fun project that’s been nagging at me for years.

  91. I listen to a lot of rap music so when I find myself referring to my followers as shorty or dog I need to find my own voice.
    If I say something out loud that just doesn’t sound like me, then it probably isnt.
    I’m just a lil white girl over here tryin to chase that paper!

  92. Melissa

    Coachy cheerleaders bad.
    Marie good.
    Hulk like Marie.

  93. My voice is squirrley and changes from day-to-day… so I’ve been working on rituals around my writing that help me to get centered and focused and come back to me before I dive in. Stuff like getting 10 minutes of clear space, walking around the block to shake it off and having a very thoughtful and absolutely quiet cup of tea. Seems that with a little breathing room, it’s easier for my voice to come out.

  94. Always make me smile and provide some insightful advice Marie, thank YOU for that.

    As many of you have already commented on, I find the best way for me to truly be me is to get away from the computer. Writing blog posts, articles or product descriptions is so darn hard when the temptation to see what other stores are doing is right in front of me. Now, I take a pen and paper and head to a park, my fav coffee shop, a bench and write. I get in my groove and simply write. It seems so much easier this way. When I get home I can input all of my posts without even bothering to check anything else out because there’s no need to. Easy peezy and way more ‘me’ involved.

  95. Hi Marie, love your site and video’s. It is interesting how as women we are plagued with that struggle of using our authentic voice. You never hear a man say, “I am not sure how to say this”. They just say it. The topic of branding and using your authentic voice is one that really resonates. So happy you brought it up.

  96. Fun punchlist to check before broadcasting my blog posts! One of my “get into my voice” tricks is what I’d call a Vocal Warmup – I write to my friends via email or facebook for a few minutes and then go to my professional writing. I seem to have a conversational BFF storytelling voice, and an instructional one. The latter is comparatively rigid. I’ve always liked Martha Stewart’s commitment to accuracy (not perfection), and sometimes conveying instructions accurately requires more structured communication. But my close friends know this of me: I can be extremely articulate, culling the perfect word for the moment (like the word CULLING!), then flip headlong into an f-bomb in the next sentence. I haven’t indulged that extreme of BFFness yet, and not sure I will. Guess you’ll have to follow along to find out.

  97. As usual, this is great advice. The most important one, to me, is to tell your own story. Everyone has a story, and why in the world should you dim your light by telling someone else’s story! Let your story be your shining light to encourage others.

  98. Marie Lauridsen

    Hi Marie!

    This was such a good one. My biggest struggle in being ME and getting out there with My voice and message are my thoughts around “it’s been said before”. With follow-up thoughts like “who will listen to me then?”…
    Im so happy to have learned that those thoughts produce only an exchuse to never act on my hearts whispering, and only keep me away from what I really want. So now I deal with those thoughts in very clear and effective ways:
    1. I see them for what they are: old stories of fear of being ME
    2. I realize that although things may have been said before, we’re all in this together, taking each others learnings and wisdoms to new heights and levels, co-creating in a way that we couldn’t if we keep quiet and dont speak up with our voice. All of our voices are different and unique, and even if we don’t use it, no one else could ever say ‘our thing’. Thats a big help too…the knowing that my voice is truly unique and that if I don’t speek up, the world will miss my interpretation of things and a chance to espand. So our voices all expand our world… with that in mind, lets not hide the passions anymore, just cause we think it’s already been said:-)

    Thanks for you!

  99. Marie you Rock my Tuesdays like Lady Gaga
    Your performing edge still comes through even now.

    Awesome intune vid, I love your Judy Garland quote.

    I find taking a moment to settle into yourself and imagine your highest best self before writing is a great way to really get into the essence of who you are.

  100. Thanks Marie for another great video. I loved your suggestions, especially the one about sharing your personal experience.
    Also found many great ideas in the comments to the video.

    In my jewelry business I find that another way of finding my voice or my specialness is by simply listening to my customers and learning from their feedback. It helps me see myself through their eyes and see what they find special about me and my work.

  101. Kat

    Sooo much, no, everything about speaking your truth, from my own experience is just allowing yourself to do so.

    There is rarely a seeking process, becuase our thoughts fire instantly. We have reactions to things. Our inner truth resonates loudly inside our heads.

    So why don’t we say it? Because we’re scared of rejections.

    But eff that bozo. M favorites are the outspokens, the honest, the bold. And I suspect that’s true for many.


  102. Marie,
    That Judy Garland quote at the end is one of my all-time favorites! Love that 🙂 To be my authentic self more online, I tend to imagine that I’m speaking to a friend, not just marketing to my prospects. It feels more heart-centered when I do this. I tend to do a lot of journaling and I love writing down ideas and phrases that come into my head. Usually, these get used somehow for blog posts or social media posts or phrases in my web copy. When I do use something of someone’s, I will use a quote and give them credit or give them a shout out of love in a post.

  103. Akua

    this message couldn’t have been more purrfectly timed beauty.
    thank you for all you do.

  104. K

    Hi Marie. Great video but one question… What if your authentic voice isn’t very exciting or going to draw in the energy you want to capture your target market? I think the tone plays a huge role in marketing and my natural syle isn’t necessarily going to stand out… I can use a different tone but also want to be authentic. Any advice?

  105. Hey there

    My best advice would be to ignore what your teachers told you (at least ignore the dumb ones) I think a lot of people get their voices crushed at a really young age by teachers who say things like “little Billy – how dare you compare plate tectonics to scones with cream and jam on them… a hundred lines for your insolence” (of course it’s a hundred lines the teacher has decided on – imagination demolished!)

    Encourage young people to be themselves and don’t forget the kid you used to be.


    And let your freak flag fly 🙂

    p.s. Marie thanks so much for Marie TV it’s a life changer x

  106. Sarah


    I LOVE this video! I really needed to hear the advice as I am just starting to launch my Holistic Nutrition and Wellness Coaching Business. Today I created a twitter account! Yeah!

    Follow me @SarahSomian 😉

    I love your website and hope to take your program one day 🙂


  107. I just love you- yeah that sounded stalker ish – I don’t care

  108. Aurora

    My favorite part about this message is that when I just let go and be that first rate version of my self, everything becomes SO MUCH EASIER. Stress melts away. Anxiety dissolves. I feel free and happy. What could be easier, or more relaxing than just being ME?

    Thank you for the great video! And YES, that dress IS hot!! Always love the outfits and the hair 🙂

  109. Leah

    I would agree the best friend strategy is great. However, when a bestie isn’t around, I find my most authentic self while walking my dog and talking to myself. (I try to keep the voices inside my head – but I can always play it off as talking to the dog…)
    My point is this: I think we can usually tell our authentic self and real voice when we speak OUT LOUD. Which is why I also like tip #1. I tend to revise wording until it sounds perfect TO ME, and what sounds perfect to me is MY voice. Love your work, Marie.

  110. I think the best way to be yourself is too not over think it. Just start writing and try to leave the critic and editor voices out of it. You can always go back and edit once you are done. By doing this you will see where you are speaking your truth and where you are speaking someone else’s voice.

  111. Marie,
    I’ve been blessed to be a public speaking coach to leaders in the corporate world for the past 30 years. Now I focus much of my time on women entrepreneurs and non-profits.

    My book, “More Than Words Can Say: The Making of Inspired Speakers” is all about the lessons I’ve learned from working with the most gifted people in these fields.

    And the takeaway for finding your voice comes from the ancient Chinese master, Lao-Tsu: “He who knows others is learned; he who knows himself is wise.” You have to ask yourself: “What defines me? What makes me most authentic? What makes my heart sing? What would I fight for? Who am I when no one is watching?

    These questions will help you discover the ultimate message … that
    is distilled in a favorite quote:

    “Honesty is telling the truth to others; Integrity is telling the truth to yourself!”

    Our voice comes from integrity, which just means being whole, not being at odds with anything.

  112. Thanks for a great video! I personally found the tip about not reading other people’s blogs when you are writing your blog the most important one. I always found it hard to concentrate when I was constantly stressing about whether the article was “as good” as my mentors blogs. I find my best work happens when I stop the “worrying about what other people think”. That to me is KEY to finding your own voice – just be who you are and who cares if other don’t like it. It is funny but the stronger and more different you are, the more people seem to like you 🙂

  113. Thank you Marie. This is another awesome video. And yes, your dress is amazing too;)

    I loved the tip about doing smth five times to test your creative voice. I am a painter so I can really see this an opportunity to experiment. I get extrememly influenced by other artists, whether I am aware of it or not. I think all painters do, it’s just the way we become educated about the visual world.

    Recently I have gone back to more ‘fine art’ work and it has been hard because it is not terribly in fashion right now. But I believe it is the type of work that helps me grow and learn more and finally what I enjoy to look at and do.

    I feel like I am going upstream all the time. Re-starting my career after I just turned fifty has not been easy either. While I was raising my kids and teaching art or doing illustration work I was waiting for this time, and now I ask myself (on bad days) if it is too late. But I have this fire in my guts telling me to go ahead and do what I am doing. And at the end of the day, that can’t be ignored. So I am going with my inner fire and I am learning on the way…

    Thank you for all the awesome work you do.

  114. Hi Marie.

    I LOVE your creativity in delivering such valuable content.

    I LOVE sharing stories to really communicate who I am and share my lessons learned. This also challenges me personally to be authentic with my clients, which is a wonderful growth opportunity for me.

    I went from stay at home mom to pole dancer – that’s a great story of passion. Check it out at

    Thank you Marie.

  115. Love your suggestions, Marie! I like to keep a journal with me in my purse so when I have ‘original’ ideas or come at a concept from my own personal angle, I write it all down. Helps me to come up with content when I’m in front of the computer ready to share my story!

  116. Do you ladies pay other people to read your work first? What about all the typos and editing that need to be corrected- like their vs there, etc. Haha- I always seem to find mistakes in my articles after I post. UGH! ( :

  117. Tell me a story.

    We all have stories. This is the idea behind BOBBblog. I was that kid who sat at grandma’s kitchen table, while she prepared the Sunday family dinner. I listened to her tell stories and I wanted to tell tales, too.

    Before launching BOBBblog I only wrote memos and emails. So, how was I ever going to write the stories I wanted to share?

    Answer: I just sat down and started typing – free writing it’s called.

    I just write, no thought to spelling – I ignore the spell check corrections. Forget about verb tense or creative wording, I just type. The result is … well, the next part will fix that.

    Then later in the day, or the next day, or maybe even the day after that, I go and edit. This is when I ask myself, “What is the point to this story?” This editing process fixes the grammar errors, rearranges sentences, eliminates others … and here is the important and fun part … I take a phrase and give it my spin. I paint a picture with my words that my eyes see. A picture I want to show my reader – I want you to see through my vision.

    And, that is when my voice is expressed because I’m the only me there is.

    Hope this helps and check out to see my stories and stories written by other babes and babe magnets.


  118. This is one of my favourite videos I’ve seen on MF!
    I love the great tips & the fun videos – they always make me laugh and put me in a good mood. Talk about making learning fun!

    I find my inner voice best when I’m relaxed and very into what I’m writing/talking about. If I’m struggling, I sometimes listen to one of my favorite songs to get into a good zone & try again!

  119. I saw this quote recently and this video made me think of it.
    “You are destined to become the peer of those you most respect because the greatness you perceive in them is your own. ~ Alan Cohen

    How true!

  120. meditate, sometimes when I meditate some really cool stuff comes out that I have no idea how it happened. Also, when I speak with my own voice, it just feels right. It feel good in my gut, in my heart and in my mind.

  121. Marie, I don’t know how to say this in a nice way, and I am sorry, but your previous video setting was so much better. You have to find a way to get rid of that echo your videos now have. You almost sound like you’re in a church! I guess you moved house and lost “the wall” when you did; I spotted that wall in one of your videos in which you were showing us around. Maybe you can put up some fabric in the the corners of this room, or experiment with a couple of parasols.

    Apart from that, keep up the good work and continue to inspire us! 🙂

  122. So true, all of it!

  123. Hi Marie!

    What a *great* video!

    What do I do to find *my* voice? I realized that looking to others meant that I trusted them more than myself. Solution? I put a sign on my desk that says, “I CAN TRUST MYSELF!”, and I repeated it to myself until it became a natural part of me. Result? I love reading other people’s stuff (like yours) but I also know that my contribution is equally valid and important and needs to be heard.

    Peace and joy!

  124. I am always incredibly inspired by your wise insights. So simple, effective and right to the point! I think of you more as a friend that as a professional “entity” on a video… 😉 You have been changing my life and I will be forever grateful for this. I am sure one day I will be able to return the favor! Thank you Marie! Live long and prosper. 🙂 xxx

  125. Something I found helpful is to sit in front of the video camera and talk… this is not for any else to see or hear… just you. So, as soon as you start to feel comfortable seeing yourself back on video, then you’re on the road to being your authentic self… try it out!

  126. lisa

    I love your video.

  127. I have definitely struggled with this at times. These are great tips that I will keep in mind as I continue to strengthen my own voice.

    #2 was a big one for me because for a while I felt as if I wasn’t yet qualified to share what I thought until I realized that I am THE most qualified to share MY experience.

    Thank you for these tips. It inspired me to get writing.

  128. This was a kick ass video! Really love witnessing the evolution of your work. So… my tricks for bringing out my own voice is to put on some killer house music, dance around, do cartwheels and handstands and then dive into it. Helps me tap into the child spirit, get the juice going and remain true to me and my craziness.

  129. Perfect timing – as usual! Thank you Marie.

  130. That was awesome – thank you!

  131. Barbara

    A great reminder, Marie…don’t read other people’s blogs (or whatever) when you’re about to write your own. When I do this, I usually find myself thinking “wow that’s so cool. I wanna write something like that’. But hey, no. What I would really like is a way for the creative writing that happens in my head while I’m on my scooter whizzing hither and thither, to be downloaded automatically to my laptop. Cos that’s when my writing ideas are truly from me.
    I guess I’m just gonna have to keep them fresh and still buzzing until I stop and take out THE notebook… (must buy a notebook for that!)
    Truly love your TV and B-School too. Thank you Thank you.

  132. Hi Marie,
    Thank you for the tips!
    I recently started running a blog for my business, and finding my own voice has not been easy,especially since English is my second language.
    I actually find it easier composing the whole post in my mind while doing dishes or cooking, or anything else that distracts me. Just let my thoughts flow first and type it later…
    It does get easier over time in each new blog post and I’m sure your tips will make it even more so.

  133. Great post Marie! I used to struggle with “my voice”. Coming from a corporate background, I used to be very formal in the way I wrote and communicated. It wasn’t until I decided to “be me” that things started clicking for me. I learn best from my friends and from conversations. Once I started writing and communicating from that point of view, the genuineness showed and the traffic and fans followed!

    • Ditto here Ralph – with a 20 year corporate ‘cloning’ experience, it took a while to shake it off and then give myself permission to just be me – take it or leave it! Good for you deciding as you have too. x K

  134. Love this and yup, no-one knows your sh%t like you do so use your own stories and experience – no one else has that! Great reminder Marie, thanks. To quote that ‘one-off’ himself, Oscar Wilde “Be yourself, everyone else is taken” 😉

  135. When I first started, I had “that voice” in my writing, you know the voice, the one that sounds professionalish and woowoo at the same time. I don’t know, perhaps it is all those years of schooling that ingrains into you how to write the paper to please your professor.

    My biggest a ha was in college (the first time, I had a few goes at it) – when I did everything the way I was told, the response I got was, yeah, that’s nice. But that other stuff (meaning the stuff I just kind of winged and half assed because I didn’t take it seriously), THAT STUFF WAS GREAT.

    WHAT?! But I didn’t try hard on that stuff. I just did my thing.

    So that is what I like to say. DON’T TRY SO HARD. Throw a little half ass in there. What is likely to come out is you, and not some robot automaton.

    Which led me to … just saying, Fuck It, and doing things the way I want to do them. Because by doing it my way, I’m also being real. And THAT is what people respond to. We’re all tired of plastic.

    I also find throwing in a few cuss words here or there never hurts. 😉 Fuck yeah.

    • I so hear you Jillian! Yay to that energy 😉

  136. Awesome video with wonderful content Marie.
    I especially love the tip about imagining that you are presenting your material to your best friend.
    When I make videos I imagine that all of my best no BS girlfriends’ heads are popping up all around my laptop as I record and that I am speaking directly to them.
    It has helped me immensely to find my own voice and to deliver my messages from an authentic place that vibrationally resonates as being the real deal.
    Thank you!
    Sending you big LOVELIGHTBLISS and XO’s

  137. Thank you, Marie, for your always upbeat messages and tips.
    So very true. The personal experiences are what color our stories in unique shades.

  138. I agree. You want to always be a first rate self and never a second rate somebody else. The thing is you will attract people like you when you are yourself. I think we can all spot a phony.

  139. This is insane! I just finished watching today’s video – Turning Pro w/ Steven Pressfield. Amazing, by the way! Will be leaving a comment there in a sec…

    What made tonight *so* special was that after watching it I felt the urge to go a back and watch other videos. I’d slotted an hour of biz skills development tonight and all I wanted to do was watch MarieTV. 🙂

    The incredible thing was the title of *this* video caught my attention since it’s what I’ve been struggling with for the last 6+ months. And, I couldn’t remember watching this one yet.

    Girl, I completely lost it when I heard you say my name and read out my question. I was jumping up and down like a crazy person. Soooooo excited to hear you answer my question and get direct advice from the woman, the rockstar, the legend herself!

    I realized in looking at the date that you released this video it was while I was contracted by The Bold Academy as their fitness coach. It was such an intense schedule that I barely had a chance to check emails or do the social media thing. Which is nuts since I think I need a 12-step program to pry myself off them. 🙂

    In all honesty, I’m happy I missed watching your video then. I wouldn’t have been ready for your answer. Tonight I was. It. Was. Perfect.

    I believe that the universe is always right on schedule…

    Tonight I had backed out of a gathering with some friends because they were going to a bar. I wanted to connect with them, but not over people getting wasted. Ironically, Steven and you had just commented that turning pro meant sometimes having to create distance from certain friends and/or situations in order to pursue your dream. Tonight I had listened to my heart and done just that. I feel like getting to find and watch *this* video about finding and sharing my authentic voice couldn’t have been a more serendipitous reward and sign from the universe giving me a cosmic high-5!

    I can only imagine how many questions you get a day, Marie. So, thank you for answering this one. You totally made my week!

    Huge cyber hug going your way, sister!

  140. Love this video! Amazing how the dress you are wearing is becoming a guest star 🙂
    I agree with SO many of the tips here so won’t add too much except for the fact that we shouldn’t confuse women starting up their businesses on the topics of finding their voice and creating A BRAND. I have launched companies that have nothing to do with my personal voice per se, but in terms of customer service and blogging my “voice” always shined through. A unique selling point or USP for branding is a bit different and branding is allot more complex than just your story, but it certainly is a great start!!

    Letita – your go-to girl for learning why no branding means no success

  141. Great timing for me to be watching this video (of course). I am building way more of ME into my brand. Last week one of my clients complemented me out of the blue that she was so glad that I was giving recommendations based on my own personal experience and not just following a protocol. (I’m a holistic nutritionist). This is a great reminder to let my authentic self come through and I will definitely be trying to say the same thing in a few different ways – super valuable exercise!

  142. Alex Hadassah Anzalone

    I loved “tough tities”… that cracked me UP! As an introvert I’ve found it hard to “find my voice” and express it because my voice has been mostly internal, and I am learning to feel safe sharing my quirkiness with the general public rather than only those super close to me. Honestly, hearing sister Marie from jersey (I’m a jerseyite too originally) waving her freak flag, joking, and cussing up and down town, has made me feel safer about sharing that side of myself. Thanks, sista Marie! Love & Kisses to you for being a beaUtiful inspiration.

  143. Oh, this one was specially brilliant, Marie!
    I talk about this with my customers, too, and I now have a three-circle methodology to get exactly there.
    Thanks for all the inspiration!

  144. Hi Marie, are you reading my mind?

    Last week, I hosted a training series called “What’s Marie Forleo Got that I Ain’t Got?”

    The inspiration for the series stems from how often women entrepreneurs compare themselves to the best brands, envy these who are having tremendous success, and wind up unconsciously imitating their mentors and role models in an effort to be successful.

    In the training, we focused on the science & positive psychology behind you and your brilliant brand. (Since I’m a psychologist, I actually “psychoanalyzed” your brand!) Our intention is to help entrepreneurs find their voices, be themselves, and create unique brands that even *you* would envy…

    I would love to know: how did you stay focused on evolving your own brand without getting distracted or comparing yourself to others who seemed to be killin’ it?

    All my best,
    Robyn McKay

    • Hey Robyn!
      I am very interested to speak with you about my own brand

      I make organic body and skin care products for women ( and men) who choose to live clean, and stay healthy.

      Problem is, very few people know about me, even though I have a cult following and have been making awesome products since 1994.

      What do you do that can help Trillium. . .and me??

      • Hi Karen, your products look wonderful:)
        Want to apply to work with me in a free – my treat – positive psychology coaching session to help you discover what’s unconsciously sabotaging your brand? The details to apply to work with me come out to the she{ology} by dr. robyn mckay community tomorrow morning. Click on the link to receive the details:
        I hope you apply…I’d love to help you.

  145. It took me forever to find ‘the right voice.’ Until someone recommended I start writing like I talk … then a light bulb went off and I completely gelled with it ….


  146. My problem is feeling like if I’m not super professional, then I won’t be taken seriously, so my writing voice is very proper and emotionless. In real life I’m all jokes, and having fun, positive and relaxed or fitting with the moment. I will have to work on bleeding out this belief that I must be, “seen and heard in a certain way” to be credible and respected.

    EFT here I come!

    Thank you! This really helps.


    • Hi Suzi,

      I know exactly what you mean, and I think we all struggle with the same issue from time to time. If you start writing in your natural voice and then go back later to edit to make sure that what you wrote also sounds professional and pertinent, you should be good to go.

      Some of my favorite sites/blogs to read are Ash Ambirge (The Middle Finger Project) and Laura Belgray ( – two of the best copywriters I’ve seen and also the funniest. Check ’em out!

  147. It’s been instrumental for me to release the fear of what other people will think about what I say/write/post. Why should I be afraid to be who I am? I’m taking things one step at a time, and that helps squash the fear as well because, well, major radical change all at once wouldn’t be “me” anyways. You have to check in with yourself to make sure you’re not filtering (to a degree — sometimes you have to “change names to protect the identities” of people in your stories if they are, and they should be, that personal) and that you’re being authentic. Don’t hold back. If you do, you’re not being yourself either. It can be hard, revealing your true self and not knowing how much to reveal at one time, but I have seen my readership grow as I’ve become more comfortable in my own skin. I still have a long way to go, but…that’s me!

  148. My entire life I’ve been a firecracker…naughty comments and stories at inappropriate times…always thought I was crazy because kept losing friends. Suddenly realized this is part of my voice and I need to stop chilling with the ‘popular’ kiddies cuz the vibrant, snazzy ones will find you.

    That’s the voice I use in my biz, Magical Mindshift Moments. When I tell folks to ‘come vibrate with me…we’ll discover your Deepest Desires” they get a double edged sword. They get energy healing that includes physical deliciousness…MUHAHAHAHA…sorry wicked laugh escaped.

    Anyways, thanks Marie, love your videos and you are absolutely on my vision board for celebrities I’d love at my dinner table one day 😛

  149. tegan

    anyone have the scoop on best website severs that allow great video uploads, e-mail pop up subscription leads, blogging, and a great on-line store. There is a zillion overwhelming ones. HELP! Please , and thanks in advance!!

  150. Everyone loves what you guys are up too. This sort of clever work and coverage!

    Keep up the superb works guys I’ve added you guys
    to my own blogroll.

  151. Mary Imhof-Prujansky

    I think the best way to find your voice is to get a higher education — specifically college. College helps you explore your interests and your talents — keys to the real you.

  152. Great video! & Amazing comments!
    even if everything has been said, people only hear it from a special someone, regdless how much they’ve heard it before..there’s someting spiritual about that.
    I find this in my practice every day for the last 20 yrs.: I’d advise about changing a lifestyle habit that the whole family mentioned before, but because the patient is now in front of me, they’re ready to listen and change. I’m sure it works the other way too: not following my advice, then one day the neighbour advises them in the elevator and the light bulb goes on….I hope it’s clear enough…

  153. I love your videos and some one the internet brought to this older one, and it was exactly what I needed. The BFF test is something I struggle with because the real me is a little… polarizing. I tend to be an aggressive no-filter realist with a dark (but sort of goofy and charming) sense of humor. Basically I’m naturally the least professional person possible. I struggle not to curse and judge a lot, and over-speak my mind professionally, but what friends love about me is my unwavering honesty, and audacity. I want to be a classy likable business owner but some times the plastered-on smile waivers and I am bummed about not being myself. I struggle to find that balance. I’ve tried hard to shed the evidence of my lower class rust-belt upbringing but I don’t think I’m fooling anyone and I’m worried it will lose me high end clients. Thoughts?

  154. Geardo Marcelo Jr

    grear video especially the 4 simple steps effective to unleashing your own voice and brand thank you so much the tips you share.

  155. Going to tell more personal stories. I need to remember this more often.
    Thank you, Marie.

  156. Awesome tips, thank you, Marie! I love the one about telling my own stories and analogies, what a great way to make it unique to me and to really embody what I teach in my own life experience. I love that. I also like the one about saying something in different ways and am going to play with that too. Thank you! 🙂

  157. I seem to get myself into trouble when I am me. Any suggestions?

    • Julia - Team Forleo

      Hi Kelly! We’re sorry to hear that, and try to remember that sometimes, simply being yourself and courageously putting it out there in the world can create a strong reaction from others. Check out this episode, I think you’ll find Marie’s advice really helpful: Thanks so much for tuning in.

  158. Carola

    Love it! Believe that our own stories are import:))

  159. Very helpful post. It has a lot of work to do but I believe with great results. Thanks ?

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