Are you ambitious in your SEO career but struggling with confidence?
Have no fear. That’s what we’re going to be helping you with today with a lady who teaches SEO people how to become more confident in their careers as well as their personal lives. In addition to being a coach, she’s also the SEO manager for Affirma. A warm welcome to the In Search SEO podcast, Adrijana Vujadin.
In this episode, Adrijana three reasons you may be struggling with confidence in your SEO career including:
- Overwhelmed by SEO updates
- Don’t know how to handle stress
- Unsure of which SEO career path to choose
THREE REASONS WHY YOU MAY BE STRUGGLING WITH CONFIDENCE IN YOUR SEO CAREER
1. Overwhelmed by SEO updates
David: Thanks so much for joining us. You can find Adrijana over at adrijanavujadin.com. So Adrijana, why offer coaching for SEOs about confidence?
Adrijana: That’s my story, how I became confident since I was struggling with that a lot. I had all of these stressful situations, imposter syndrome, and anxiety for a couple of years. I wanted to give up after the biggest burnout of my life. So I decided that something needed to change and I found that in changing my mindset and my attitude while working. I love SEO, and I still love it, but I couldn’t handle all the stress that we are having every day.
So I did a lot of different courses and mindset sessions. I was reading hundreds of books to improve that mindset and how to gain that confidence. Then I realized that a lot of people around me are struggling with the same thing. But what I see in the SEO industry is that there is no coach for it. Even worse, we have a negative tendency toward coaching. But we really need to have these coaching sessions which I can’t say is the only way but it is a faster way to become confident. People don’t need to wait a year or more to become confident and get rid of all these stressful situations. They can do it with me in just a couple of months. I found the purpose in that. What I’m offering nobody in the SEO industry does, at least in the way I’m handling these coaching sessions specified for SEO professionals.
D: Yes, this will be useful for many SEOs, even though I’m sure SEOs may not want to admit it. There are some SEOs who are struggling and don’t want to admit it, while some are happy to seek help. I guess the majority of people just suffer in silence a little bit.
And you say that SEOs who are ambitious about their careers, but often lack that confidence often do so because of three reasons. Starting off with number one, you’re overwhelmed by SEO updates and technical learning, because it always makes you feel that you don’t know enough.
A: Yeah, and that is one of the biggest reasons why people are so stressed in SEO jobs because SEO professionals are very passionate about SEO, especially with the recent Google updates, and a lot of changes are happening in the end in the SEO industry. People tend to stay up to date with all this information but there is so much contradictory information. Every day you’re learning new things about technical, content, updates, and now AI. It’s becoming overwhelming for everything. In the past, we had just a few major updates during the year. Now, we have updates every month, almost every week. Then people are putting out all these expectations and I need to know them all, today. Then the stress comes because it’s impossible, especially for people who are only a few years in the SEO industry because we are lacking so many things. What I want to highlight here is when you know and learn how to handle all these changes and updates, then you become more confident. You’re feeling good in your SEO job. There is always a space for learning but the most important thing is to be good today, to have that inner peace that allows you to grow and learn in your SEO career.
D: Yeah, I recognize SEOs probably spend too much time trying to educate themselves. If someone is perhaps an independent SEO client or even an SEO manager in a company, obviously, they have to stay up to date with what’s happening. But at the end of the day, they have to deliver their work either for their company or their clients, whether they’re self-employed or working for a large agency. Is there a reasonable amount of time per week that you recommend focusing on learning versus doing your job?
A: Yeah, I wouldn’t say I have an exact recommendation, but what I would recommend is that it depends on your years of experience. SEO specialists in their first years are definitely learning more than SEO managers after five or six years. But what I want to recommend is to define and plan what you need to work on to get where you want to be in the future. Depending on the different career paths, you will have different kinds of skills that you will need to acquire to be that expert in the field you want. So depending on what you want and where you want to go, you will have that knowledge for the different kinds of skills that you want to require
This is why it’s very important to know what you want to be. Focus your learning on your specific career path. If you are just spending time on some backlink techniques but see yourself as a technical expert in the future, you’re not leveraging your learning time well. If you want to be a technical expert, focus on technical things. Obviously, you can put some percentage of time into learning other things, but there is no need to know everything. As you know, when you’re learning SEO you will see just how much you don’t know. I’m very efficient about when you are learning, learn what you need and not just a little of everything.
D: Great point. Learn what’s relevant and suitable for your client at the moment. That’s going to make them satisfied and improve your current situation. At the same time, progress your general knowledge slowly but stop comparing yourself against other people who are many more years into their career. So if you’re only one or three years into your career, stop expecting to be at the same knowledge levels as someone who is 20 years into an SEO career.
A: Yeah, I love that you’ve mentioned comparing ourselves to other SEO specialists. I realized with my clients when they are comparing themselves to other people with a lot of years of experience if the goal is just comparing themselves, you will find that you’re not good enough. It’s almost impossible to grade someone’s knowledge and compare it to yours.
Another thing about comparing is what I want to accomplish with comparing to others. I think a completely different question needs to be here. Why am I comparing myself to others? If my goal is to see myself in the future, then I should look into what kind of skills I need to require to be in the position I want to be in. If you’re comparing yourself to others, then it’s a bad feeling that you’re not good enough, it’s stressful. But if you are redirecting the question to what I need to do to be where I want, it’s totally different energy. It’s more inspirational energy to accomplish the things that you want to achieve.
2. Don’t know how to handle stress
D: And the second reason why SEOs struggle with confidence is they don’t know how to handle stressful situations.
A: Yeah. And it doesn’t matter if you’re working in-house or client-facing/agency consulting work, SEO professionals are handling a lot of different stress on a daily basis. What I want to highlight here is that stress has a different meaning for different people. Some people will be anxious, and some will be nervous/panicking. Some will be sweating, or some will just be overwhelmed by all these task requirements from the clients or from the internal team.
First, you need to identify what is stressful for you. Once you’re inundated by all these situations, then you need to come up with the solutions as a preparation for the next time you have this stressful situation. Because it’s very hard when you are having the stress at first glance to handle that in the moment. But if you’re prepared yourself, you can identify this as a stressful situation then you can take steps into how to handle these situations. And ask yourself, is there any truth in these kinds of situations? Are they really stressful? Because we are aware we are stressing ourselves in a lot of situations that are not even stressful. But it’s just the way our brain works.
D: Yeah, whenever I maybe feel slightly stressed, I think of a quote by a scientist called Carl Sagan. And Carl Sagan used to talk about planet Earth, and how it’s so insignificant. It’s a tiny little pale blue dot in space. And the quote continues about how all of humankind was on that pale blue dot, and all the grains of sand on a beach, and how insignificant my current situation is compared with what has gone on before. And that’s not to say it’s not important, but if you realize that what you’re doing, in the grand scheme of things, in the things that are really important in life, isn’t that significant? For me, it makes me feel better.
A: Yeah, and it’s so true. I used to say to my clients that we are not doctors, people are not going to die. So reduce that stress. Yes, it’s a stressful situation but when we are aware of all these other things about ourselves… It’s impossible to overcome the stress if you’re not aware of the other perspectives that you have, and the core values on how to overcome impostor syndrome. Where we are today and where you want to be. Just to be present and say, “Hey, I have a problem but I’m not going to panic.” There are different ways how I can handle this and being stressed is not the only way. You can overcome that challenge, even if you’re not stressed and that’s our goal.
3. Unsure of which SEO career path to choose
D: Yeah, to be present is a great one as well. Number three is you are confused about which SEO career path you need to choose in order to grow. How do you become less confused about that?
A: By testing. The big thing here is that we are confused and we don’t know where we go. But once you decide where you want to go, and it doesn’t matter if that goal has been changed to next year, you accomplished a lot and you will learn a lot. For example, in my experience, for the first two years, I wanted to be a technical expert. I didn’t see myself as a co-manager, I didn’t see myself as a coach for SEO professionals, not at all. However, I made a plan of what I needed to accomplish to become a technical expert. Then after two years, I realized I was fine with that and I’m so happy that learned so many technical skills, but now I really want to do something else so I redirected my career path to be an SEO manager.
When I became an SEO manager, I realized that I really enjoy working with people. I really want to mentor other SEO specialists who recently joined the industry. Then after that experience, I realized that I really enjoyed being a coach and having these mindset sessions to help people become confident, get rid of stress, and overcome impostor syndrome.
My approach here is that it doesn’t matter what you currently want, you need to be there to see how it feels. Then it will definitely help you to decide where you want to be and see yourself at the next level.
THE PARETO PICKLE – SOFT SKILLS
D: Great advice. Let’s finish off with the Pareto Pickle. Pareto says that you can get 80% of your results from 20% of your efforts. What’s one SEO activity that you would recommend that provides incredible results for modest levels of effort?
A: I would say that soft skills. You probably wouldn’t think of soft skills like that but what I see in my experience and of my clients is that soft skills are great for improving the impact and all other aspects of the SEO on your personal life if you develop your soft skills to a level they weren’t before.
D: I’ve been host, David Bain. You can find Adrijana over at adrijanavujadin.com. Adrijana, thanks so much for being on the In Search SEO podcast.
A: Thank you so much for having me.
D: And thank you for listening. Check out all the previous episodes and sign up for a free trial of the Rank Ranger platform over at rankranger.com.