You can't swing a cat without hitting a book, a blog, an article on the importance of building a personal brand. I just finished another one yesterday. I buy it, I get it. So here it is.
I could give you the text book version of me, I look pretty good on paper, many of us do. I love my job, hell that makes me only 20% of the population. I have a husband that loves me, and two healthy kids. AND, I live in a house that makes me smile every single morning when I wake up in it. Should I keep going? Ok, ok, my parents are alive and love me too. A lot.
I could keep going but you'd either vomit or log off to check your email.
But let's just check the marketing crap at the door for a minute. Let's see if this sounds familiar to some of you.
That job that I love is hard as hell. My expense reports are always late, my clients demand things that I think are ridiculous and then ask me for a discount for my time. My company does dumb stuff and I have to work around systems that make me want to poke myself in the eye with a fork.
Yes my husband loves me, yet some days he would like to stick me in the eye with a fork because I'm often demanding and unreasonable. And nagging is a competency I've mastered as an art form.
Those kids. Yea, they're healthy, and smart, and often whiny and unreasonable and just a few hours ago I was standing in a pile of Legos yelling like a freak to pick up this room or someone's gonna die and I don't care who it is!
My house. Yes, it's freakin' gorgeous and I dreamed of living in a place like this for years. Yet, there's still a pile of laundry the size of a courthouse and enough dog hair that you could knit sweaters for every child in Alaska and my woodwork is filthy and unless you call ahead my bathroom resembles a Shell station.
Life is hard. Some days harder than I can handle. Some days I can be found in a fetal position sobbing uncontrollably in my closet.
I have to be reminded that what you feed grows. If I feed the beast that bitches and moans, she becomes unbearable and intolerable. If I remember the gratitude, for the job, the family, the house, the love, that can also grow. But let's not walk around pretending like that's easy or we wake up every day with it all figured out. That's a lie.
My brand is built on honesty with a huge dose of humor to get through it all. I'm driving my brand with gratitude and working to manage a little too much sarcasm. Mostly I've got a string tied around my finger trying to remember to ask God. He's brought me all the good stuff and I'm busy trying not to screw it up.
My top 4 personal brand tips.
1. Take stock in who you are and your rock star strengths. Don't build a brand on mediocrity.
2. Be honest with yourself, and about yourself. When you're not honest it looks and smells funky, like those leftovers in the back of the fridge. They were good at one time but now it's all gone wrong.
3. Daily gratitude for your strengths will help you build and grow. Think it, say it, write it, shout it from the mountain tops when things go well. Little things, big things, all things.
4. Ask God continually if you're headed in the right direction. If he tries to take you on a different path, listen and go, just bring along your sense of humor for the trip.
What are your tips? What's your personal brand?