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  • Personal Brands: Hate and Disorder

    How are you doing amidst the piles you’ve created? You know, the piles of old bills, dirty clothes, and detritus of your hobbies (like your carnival stuffed animal collection or unusable swag from less than stellar events)?

    Maybe it’s not your clutter. Maybe it’s your roommate’s mess, or your office mate’s. Maybe you inherited it from a well-meaning relative who filled up your place with her old furniture or your work ancestor: the person who sat at your desk or cubicle before you arrived.

    Are you worn down, filled with disgust, and furious while living in the small margins of space that aren’t covered with dust or mold or worse? Have you come to hate the space you occupy? We know if you have, even if we haven’t seen the place you’re at. Hating disorder and not taking action to clean it up is fomenting a negative attitude toward the world, and making a marked, negative impression of your personal brand on us.

    Marked as negative

    Things that would be trash often surround us in life. Why does this make us mad – either crazy or crazy plus angry? Because it is irrational to be burdened by garbage you must face or sift though in order to do something rational: like live well or work smart.

    Don’t kid yourself that someone in Haiti might need a pair of running shoes that are stained from two years of roadwork, accompanied by the molting socks you left in them. Anyway, stashing them in a pile in the corner is not serving the needy, who are not so needy that they want to wear your garbage.

    Maybe your space is clean but your mind holds toxic waste

    Some of us enjoy near pristine physical environments while surrounded by virtual trash: like brain litter born of mean-spirited emails and IMs. Our minds are juiced with the debris of unfair accusations about our talents or intellect. Our honest accomplishments are stacked up on a musty, dusty foundation of “you are less and I am more” reviews of bad bosses, jealous colleagues, dysfunctional family members, and BFFs who have breached what you deserve: a sarcophagus of self-worth.

    It is my experience that people who come from clutter: space wise or brain wise, speak the angriest and ugliest words. It’s like a haze of brown and grey smog infects them and thwarts oxygen or common courtesy from entering their brains. And, we all have experienced GIGO: garbage in and garbage out. Garbage doesn’t require a fancy algorithm to display results. Garbage is a pretty straight-forward producer of more garbage.

    So, how are you doing, as we turn the corner on the second half of this year? It is too late for Spring-cleaning, but you can still lose weight for summer. That is: take the time to toss the stuff that is weighing you down before the days get shorter on their own.

    Unburden yourself

    Personal brands: unburden yourself now and let the sunny side of life lift you up and past your old behavior or the behavior of people who should be dropped off in the don’t recycle bin of “toxic people I used to put up with.” Go through your so-called friends or followers and hold onto the real, good ones: the nourishing, wise, and in-your-corner ones.

    With the spaciousness you create in your real, psychological, and social media space you’ll re-gain the ability to map out what you really want in your life. If you got a holiday day off or two, come back into our lives free of the clutter that’s made you mad.

    Infuse and surround your personal brand with the best stuff: inside and out.

    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.

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