Over and over again I see that when professionals and leaders become disengaged or disempowered, a big part of it is due to dis-alignment.
"Dis-alignment to what?" you may ask. Well, simply answered – TO YOURSELF. A brand doesn't only belong to products, or companies, or places. Each of us is a unique brand, too! If our brand is "off" or dis-ingenuous, we won't feel on purpose, and we won't be leveraging the best of who we are in order to make a difference in our work and in our lives.
I can remember a time in my life when I was eager to get involved and be seen and heard. I was introduced to an organization that was doing great work in the community and I began to attend meetings and volunteer my ideas and my time. Even though I was making an impact, it was not the right opportunity for me because some of my deeply-held values were being compromised. I was not serving my brand – I was not serving ME.
I also remember another time in my career when I had to spend more than 80 percent of my time doing tasks that did not align with who I was naturally and where I could thrive and continue "killing it!" Although I worked hard, eventually I had to "get out" and create work that lit me up!
In our careers, especially, when we are unable to clearly define and share our brand, we consistently lose that alignment that is critical to our happiness and success. We quiet our voices, we close our doors, we become apathetic for too long. Being clear and proud of our personal brand helps us to better understand where we fit in perfectly – with organizations, with people, and with life.
The only way to make your brand is to make it personal.
Many things contribute to create the brand that is YOU, like your personality (how you operate naturally), your talents (what you're great at), your values (what you can't live without), and what you ultimately want to achieve (how you want to feel and live).
So how do you start? Begin here by asking yourself:
- How do I operate? Am I super talkative and friendly? Do I like to work independently and quietly? Do I love creating many things? Am I very direct, or am I slow to warm?
- What am I great at naturally? PS...I have a great freebie for you that will help you discover your talents flawlessly! Grab it here.
- What do I value more than anything? We all have different values, but consider what you truly can't live without, like time with your family, freedom, integrity, honesty, etc. This isn't always as easy as it seems. Take your time and try to identify your top five.
- What's your purpose? Ultimately, what are you here to do? Yes, your purpose can change. What is it today? Mine is to create conscious leaders. You can take this purpose and then drill down to create a succinct mission statement, which will help you determine the path that will lead you to achieving that purpose.
Give this a try and you'll create alignment in your life and career that will have you feeling joyful and productive in no time!