I was in New York for various meetings (and a little bit of fun) last week.
Getting out is a going in; it works wonders every single time.
It was a great time!
The anonymity that comes with travel has always sparked a clarity and creativity in me that, in my opinion is unparalleled (travel and creativity are linked; a study). Come to think of it, this is why I’ve been inspired to pick-up and move six times in ten years (yes, you read that right).
I love change, I dig re-invention and live for getting out to see the world and its people (our people, really) and I find great value in sharing all of this with my family. The above illustration shows all the cities we’ve lived since 2001.
In my time on the planet, I’ve come realize that at the core of humanity is a desire to be seen. Really being seen. We hear the words unconditional love or respect used to describe this phenomenon. The ways we get there (to really see someone), of course, are taking the time, being focused on repeating that time taken and ~ as often as we can ~ truly being in the moment.
The way we are seen is by showing more of who we are, no matter what. No matter what we think someone will feel or say about us. No matter what our very own judgements or conditioning says (and no matter how loudly the mind screams it).
Being seen, of course, is not about the limelight, a stage or a being behind a camera. It’s about being seen for all that we are and for the value this brings; the positive ripple effect our uniqueness has on all come into contact with. You (yes you) have touched so many lives, personally and professionally. And there’s probably so many more you don’t know even know about yet…
Branding, in fact, is about that; seeing the whole you. And touching others with your true and meaningful story. I like to say branding helps you be seen for how haute you really are; the true value you bring.
Our connection with our humanity and that around us, no matter if traveling afar, under our own roof or while sitting across from a client is about doing this: seeing the whole person. Taking the time to slow down enough produces a magic that not only fosters individual happiness but, in turn, a collective peace in the world. Mother Theresa said that in order to grow world peace we needed to go home and love our families. It’s true. And I’d add seeing people for all that they are versus just a sum of their moving parts.
Helping a woman brand herself/her business, in my opinion, is creating this space. Helping unlock her authenticity, go public with it (can you imagine) and communicate it throughout all she does (can you IMAGINE). giggle
This process, at the core, is a coming back to self most marketing or branding experts don’t discuss. It’s something that, back in my advertising days, wasn’t discussed either. Though branding huge corporations “human” is done all the time, the conversations weren’t exactly like the one here. I do feel, however, branding is more about self-development, visibility and expression than it is about sales, growing a business or helping you with your marketing. It does those things too but it’s deeper than that. (we don’t call it an archaeological dig for nothing)
So, how to brand yourself/how to be happy (they’re one of the same):
• Gives ourselves permission to be ~ tada ~ ourselves.
• Practice/DO the unique act, over and over again.
• Grow the ability ~ being able to then work, act, talk, write from this powerful place no matter the situation or pull is to be different or fit within the box society creates for us.
If you own a business, here are three things you can do right now to create a more haute, heartful and human brand; one that connects with your ideal audience in a meaningful way. If you don’t have a business, here’s how to be happy and how to have better, more rewarding relationships:
• Share your story…not just on a static page on your website but often and in different times (and often) on your blog and newsletters.
• Find out what that authentic yet slightly unexpected you “thing” is. You’re an acupuncturist who is a foodie: that’s not unexpected, per say, but if you’re a lighthearted, funny and sarcastic tell-it-like-it-is acupuncturist like a recent client of mine, you could call yourself “the doc with bite” and use that unexpected piece about yourself to then create all the copy and design pieces for your brand.
• Share your pain. A level of honesty and relate creates connection points that genuinely and authentically move your ideal clients closer to you…whether it’s opting into your list, picking up the phone to call for a consultation or deciding to work with you.
It’s so easy to get sucked into the “professional” trap; only say or do this, only share that much and the same goes with our personal lives, sometimes even with close friends. We don’t allow a richer connection to be created when connection is what brands us happy…successful.
Get out of your head; get out of your own way, be yourself.
And this brings us full circle to travel. Travel help us do this. It helps us tune into more of who we naturally are and what we’re authentically searching for in life.
Authenticity is definitely the new black. Haute!