Are you playing “dress up” to match the expectations of others? Is there an ever thinning veil, between the real you and the ideal you that you’ve invented and are now struggling to project?
Are you still clenching to maintain the “first date” behavior code with recruiters, your boss or clients? Is your armor cracking (or scorching, if you saw Iron Man 2)? Is it becoming clear that the emperor (or whatever title you hold) has no clothes?
How did you get in this mess?
You pretended to be detail oriented, self-motivated and an early riser. You pretended to be an advanced user of Excel, Final Cut, WordPress and Spanish. You said you were willing, in fact eager, to work weekends, late nights or be on call 24/7/365.
Are you faking it in hopes that you will be making it sometime soon? Are you keeping the lid on your volcano of real strengths that are now screaming to be exploited while you ply your trade with your weakest suit?
Or have you simply outgrown the persona you still attempt to play by being underemployed or dis-employed or just phoning it in?
What is the naked truth about who you really are and what you really want to do?
The closer you can get to the true you, the happier and richer you will be. Richer: as in making lots of money. Happier: as in rich in every way: spiritually, mentally, physically and once again, financially.
Why? To have phenomenal success in any field or even with any project, you have to have unstoppable, intrinsic and sustainable motivation. Problems have to appear as puzzles that you are delighted to decode.
A deep vein running through you must declare: I would do this even if I won the lottery. I might wear better shoes or drive a cooler car and take way better vacays, but I would still be doing “this” for work, for this company or my own company, and my clients, or whatever the “this” and the “who” are for you.
What is your IT?
A lot of us have names for your Highest Goal (Michael Ray), your Sweetest Fruit (Laurel Mellin) or Ultimate Outcome (me). These are just labels for your IT. What is IT? IT is the thing screaming to get out of your mind or body and put onto this planet. It is the truth you may be hiding from yourself, as well as others.
Here’s my embarrassing truth. I am someone who needs other people’s dreams and ambitions in order to be self-actualized. I am meant to help, encourage, find the right way, take the first bullet, stay up all night to get it done on time, and make the most money possible for the people I work for. I respond so easily to the red light on the camera because I believe I am helping the audience. I teach for the same reason. In fact, it’s why I write to you each week.
My clients often write “thank you” in the memo of their retainer checks.
If I were a dog, I’d be a golden retriever – a working dog that loyally runs into the rushing waters of a cold river to get the stick and get it back to you. Simply put, my personal brand is this: I am a helper, with vision and grit.
If we stripped away all the varnish (and that’s the nice word for it), what is your naked truth?
Planet Earth is 71% water. Take a skinny dip into it, baring your real personal brand.
Nance Rosen is the author of Speak Up! & Succeed. She speaks to business audiences around the world and is a resource for press, including print, broadcast and online journalists and bloggers covering social media and careers. Read more at NanceRosenBlog. Twitter name: nancerosen.