Writer, Unleash Your Inner Honey Badger!

by John Soares on December 5, 2011

We freelance writers deal with adversity daily. It’s hard to keep plugging away, sending queries, making cold calls, updating your website. Sometimes you just want to crawl into bed and just stay there.

But don’t. Instead…

Unleash Your Inner Honey Badger!

Yes, it’s my first-ever post where I tell you to be just like someone else, ‘cept it’s not Lady Gaga — it’s the meanest, nastiest critter in Africa. Readers, I present your new role model…the honey badger!

HONEY BADGER -- chowing down on a snake! (Wikimedia Commons)

HONEY BADGER -- chowing down on a snake! (Wikimedia Commons)

HONEY BADGERS are notoriously fearless and tough animals, having been known to savagely attack their enemies when escape is impossible. They are tireless in combat and can wear out much larger animals in physical confrontations. (from the irrefutable Wikipedia)



Nothing Beats a Good Vid: The Honey Badger in Action

Warning: coarse language! Don’t watch if you’re easily offended by four-letter words — or “nature red in tooth and claw.”

I Say Be Assertive, But the Honey Badger Says…

Go For the Kill!

Seriously folks, most freelance writers, me included, occasionally need to pump it up and get it done with no fear of failure.

Your Take

Are you able to access YOUR inner honey badger? Do you need to be more aggressive in your career or other areas of your life? Tell us below…

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{ 33 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Ruth - The Freelance Writing Blog December 5, 2011 at 9:32 AM

Haha, John. Was the Lady Gaga reference meant for my benefit? I have indeed highlighted freelance writing lessons learned from LG on my blog, and I must say that after watching this video, I don’t think it’s that much of a stretch from Gaga to Honey Badger:

– neither one gives a shit
– they both have loose skin to help them twist
– they both go after what they want
– others capitalize on their hard work
– they aren’t discouraged by challenges or obstacles

Great comparison!
Ruth – The Freelance Writing Blog recently posted…Stop Looking Like an Idiot Blogger and Learn Some Basic Grammar!


2 John Soares December 5, 2011 at 10:03 AM

Ruth, a few months back I saw so many different bloggers write about Lady Gaga that she stuck in my mind as the likely number-one most-used analogy for just about everything.

I really like your comparison list of Lady Gaga and the Honey Badger!
John Soares recently posted…How to Minimize Interruptions So You Can Get Your Writing Done


3 Anne Wayman December 5, 2011 at 9:43 AM

Tough marketing, or staying tough or hanging in seems to be a theme today. MakeALivingWriting.com is much the same and I’ve got something similar, but John, finding an animal that matches the mood is a great idea.

And I love how you got lady gaga into the mix… great seo stuff, plus good advice for us.
Anne Wayman recently posted…How I Saved My Writing Business When I Was Convinced It Was All Over


4 John Soares December 5, 2011 at 10:06 AM

Being tough is important for everyone, especially the self-employed.

I’ll be surprised if I rank well for Lady Gaga, unless it’s very long tail, like: Lady Gaga honey badger.
John Soares recently posted…Top Speed Reading Techniques to Boost Your Productivity


5 John Soares December 5, 2011 at 10:10 AM

I knew next to nothing about Lady Gaga until just a couple of months ago — I pay almost no attention to popular culture. But then I saw this vid of her duet with the classy Tony Bennett (still the only time I’ve heard her sing) and I was blown away:

John Soares recently posted…Why Freelance Writers Must Be On LinkedIn


6 Anne Wayman December 5, 2011 at 12:12 PM

Oh this is great John. New to me too. Gaga is really quite something.
Anne Wayman recently posted…Follow My Lead – 6 Tips To Help You Write Leads That Grab Attention


7 BuySellWordpress December 6, 2011 at 8:51 AM

I’ve heard about Lady Gaga, actually I like the majority of her songs, but this is the first time I watched this video. This is a masterpiece!) Such combination of singers, such duet is an excellent one!
BuySellWordpress recently posted…Wordpress Themes


8 Dave Doolin December 6, 2011 at 4:34 PM

I’m not a fan of her music, but I am a fan of her marketing. She really gets how it all goes together, and she seems comfortable in the spotlight. (A really big deal, and not something I much care for myself.)
Dave Doolin recently posted…Ask Anca: How much site maintenance do your clients do on their own?


9 John Soares December 7, 2011 at 1:10 PM

I agree she does a great job at creating a brand for herself.

And this is truly the only time I’ve heard her sing. I love jazz music in all its forms, and I love this.
John Soares recently posted…My Interview With Carol Tice About Freelance Writing


10 Frank Bowes December 5, 2011 at 11:56 AM

Hi John,
I don’t know what it is but every blog that I read recently has helped me in some way. I’m not just talking about, “Hey, that was useful.” I mean helped me with something I was actually facing at the time. Quite recently I hit a bad spell where everything I produced just didn’t seem to hit the mark. I completely lost my confidence over it.

OK, back to the Honey Badger… I must have completely missed the whole Lady Ga Ga thing, I’ve been too busy watching Brian Tracy videos. The biggest lesson I’ve taken away is to take negativity out of the equation. It helps that both my girlfriend and I are following the same process. So if I say “I won’t win this bid.” She replies “You will win this bid and the client will be so pleased with you they will give you repeat work.” I then repeat this mantra every time I start doubting myself. The great thing about it is, after some time it becomes natural and you go into every situation with the view to succeeding. I guess our Honey Badger just doesn’t know the meaning of self-doubt.
Frank Bowes recently posted…Simply Whispers Review


11 John Soares December 5, 2011 at 3:45 PM

Thanks for stopping by Frank. I agree that the honey badger knows no self-doubt. He’s driven by instinct to kill and eat, and he’s very good at it.
John Soares recently posted…The Best Way For Freelance Writers to Hold Themselves Accountable


12 Anne Wayman December 5, 2011 at 12:10 PM

lol, I actually have two posts on aboutfreelancewriting about Lady Gaga – not because I keep up with pop culture, I don’t. But my granddaughter said something that caused me to blog about Gaga and getting high (http://www.aboutfreelancewriting.com/2011/02/lady-gaga-gets-high-to-write-will-it-work-for-you/) and then one of my regular guest posters, Helen Chang parodied Bad Romance (http://www.aboutfreelancewriting.com/2010/05/lady-gaga%E2%80%99s-%E2%80%9Cbad-romance%E2%80%9D-for-writers-friday-fun/). It was great great link bait for a brief period.
Anne Wayman recently posted…Give Away Your Book! It’s The Best Business Card You Ever Had


13 John Soares December 5, 2011 at 3:43 PM

Anne, I think most of the music I listened to and liked from about 1967 through the 1970s was written under the influence of marijuana — and a lot of it was very good.

I have creative friends who still occasionally partake, and they are able to produce some quality art.
John Soares recently posted…8 Ways to Back Up Your Computer Files


14 Lori December 5, 2011 at 3:15 PM

LOVE the honey badger! The t-shirts are out, too. :)
Lori recently posted…Tire Kickers


15 John Soares December 5, 2011 at 3:39 PM

Randall’s t-shirts I presume!
John Soares recently posted…The Power of a Small Website


16 Lori December 6, 2011 at 6:32 AM

Definitely Randall’s. :)

My inner honey badger emerges at negotiation time. It has to. No one is looking out for my best interests except for me.
Lori recently posted…My Very Own, Highly Subjective List of Top Blogs I Like and Maybe Even So Will You


17 John Soares December 6, 2011 at 6:40 AM

I agree completely Lori. My ability to be assertive when negotiating freelance writing fees has made me a lot of extra money over the years. At a minimum it’s funded my retirement accounts.
John Soares recently posted…Why Freelance Writers Must Be On LinkedIn


18 Eric Soares December 6, 2011 at 7:57 AM

Ha ha! I love the honey badger analogy (and video), and as a closet Gaga fan, I can dig the Tony Bennett video. Thanks, John, for a “light” post. It was refreshing.

Oh, and when I’m dealing with “snakes” in the corporate world, as I eat them I shall forever repeat “Honey badger don’t give a shit.”
Eric Soares recently posted…Armor for Extreme Sea Kayakers


19 John Soares December 6, 2011 at 8:12 AM

We all have to eat the snake sometimes and we gotta make ourselves do it.

Carol Tice at the MakeALivingWriting.com blog wrote a post in similar vein recently that has a lot of good comments: To Earn More, Get in Touch With Your Inner Writer Bitch.
John Soares recently posted…8 Ways to Back Up Your Computer Files


20 Gambolin' Man December 6, 2011 at 9:28 AM

Seriously folks, most freelance writers, me included, occasionally need to pump it up and get it done with no fear of failure.

“Facing it, always facing it, that’s the way to get through. Face it.”
– Joseph Conrad


21 John Soares December 6, 2011 at 10:17 AM

Nice Conrad quote, Tom — I like it!
John Soares recently posted…Should You Edit As You Write?


22 Dave Doolin December 6, 2011 at 4:32 PM

This honey badger thing going up there with Ze Frank’s “Brain Crack” as top motivational material. Ze Frank’s video has copied, best to find the original on his website.
Dave Doolin recently posted…Ask Anca: How Does WordPress Work? An Infographic


23 Laura Spencer December 7, 2011 at 1:29 PM

What a fun way to hammer home an important point!
Laura Spencer recently posted…In Defense of Blogging Reciprocity


24 John Soares December 8, 2011 at 7:20 AM

This was a fun and easy post to write Laura, and I can tell my readers are enjoying it!
John Soares recently posted…How to Minimize Interruptions So You Can Get Your Writing Done


25 Gene Burnett December 8, 2011 at 5:54 PM

I love the video and the Honey Badger is badass….But I’ve found that some walls are for going through, but not all. Sometimes that wall is telling me, “Try another way.” It’s very fashionable right now to say, “Never give up.” I see it on facebook almost daily. But I don’t think it’s a good rule. Giving up on Russia might have won Hitler WWll. Sometimes surrender or even flat out heading for the hills is the smartest course of action. I suspect that even the Honey Badger would run from a full grown lion. So I would say, “Give it all you’ve got, but listen to the results you’re getting and be open to changing direction if things are consistently not working out in spite of your best efforts.” Some of the best things in my life have come from giving up. Flow more~Force Less. GB


26 John Soares December 9, 2011 at 6:52 AM

Gene, your point is well-taken. My main goal here is to encourage people to be more assertive in their marketing and to shake off the inevitable slings and arrows that come with being self-employed. It’s easy for many people to get discouraged and sink into complacency.
John Soares recently posted…The Best Way For Freelance Writers to Hold Themselves Accountable


27 Ellie December 9, 2011 at 12:11 AM

Well you certainly do know how to make a point:). But, seriously, you give some excellent tips. I have recently started a WP blog on anxiety attacks and your advice should be of great help in my improving the quality of my content.

Ellie recently posted…my anxiety experiences


28 Patricia Fry December 9, 2011 at 11:28 AM

I’m referencing your blog post related to house sitting as a sort of writer’s retreat for the SPAWN Market Update. SPAWN is Small Publishers, Artists and Writers network. http://www.spawn.org.

Got hooked on some of your other posts–clever!

Would like to be considered for an interview. Let me know if you’d like more info about me. For one thing, I’m the executive director of SPAWN. Been writing for publication since 1973. Am the author of 34 books–number 35 coming out in Feb. Most of my books now relate to writing, publishing and book promotion.

Patricia Fry


29 John Soares December 11, 2011 at 6:48 AM

Hi Patricia. SPAWN looks interesting. I just sent you an e-mail.
John Soares recently posted…How to Minimize Interruptions So You Can Get Your Writing Done


30 Elephant's Eye December 9, 2011 at 12:48 PM

I’m probably your only reader who thinks – badger friendly honey. Wildlife friendly honey farmers put beehives on poles, out of reach of honey badgers. The animals will tear the beehive apart to get at the larvae, rather than the honey.
Elephant’s Eye recently posted…Foreign flowers in December for once were Blotanists


31 Warren December 9, 2011 at 3:47 PM

Ok, the article was great and the whole reason I came in the first place, but now after watching that video, I’m laughing so hard I can’t even work! :)
I’m off to find someone to show it to LOL

Warren recently posted…My Year End Twitter Blitz


32 Veronica Cervera December 11, 2011 at 5:24 PM

Amazing video! Who doesn’t love the honey badger? :) Just goes to show that looks can be deceiving, even though it’s all cute and cuddly on the outside it’s fearless and relentless on the inside.

The honey badger means business. :)


33 Edward December 27, 2012 at 11:15 PM

Nice video and great article. Thanks for the share.


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