Being who you are, is your authentic personal brand
There are a lot of people talking about personal brand, but what exactly is it? And why is it important?
To some people, the idea of having a personal brand can be a little off-putting. It can feel superficial and some of the articles and tips on this subject provide instructions that are truly superficial. Pretending to be something you are not, will not serve your personal brand, it will create a horrible expectation to be someone you are not.
At Brand Illumination we know personal brand is something much deeper and more interesting than a clever construction or façade. Yes, personal brand is about the way other people see you and think about you, yet we believe it is more about how you think and feel about yourself
Creating a truly authentic personal brand empowers you to let go of what you think you ‘should’ be, accept who you really are, and celebrate it. There is a lot of material around imposter syndrome, the mask(s) we wear in certain situations or the roles we feel we have to fulfil to live up to our own and other’s expectations. Buying into this game is not sustainable; it takes a lot of energy to ‘keep up appearances’. There is an alternative, and it can seem risky – what if you let people know the whole of who you are?
Acknowledging the whole of your personal brand
Your personal brand is the point of connection between you and other people. It is most powerful when you are present and simply BE who you are, rather than put on a mask or play a role that you think will show off the parts you want other people to see.
Personal brand is the whole eclectic mix of all that you are. Yes, it includes your experiences, the things you’ve done well, your triumphs, strengths and wins. It includes your beliefs, values, your intuition and your interests and passions. AND your personal brand is also your vulnerabilities, your less flattering traits, your judgements, biases, your defensive and aggressive tendencies. They are all part of the unique whole that is you. Without that whole package you would not be you, and the whole of you would be diminished. Having the courage to own and hold all of who we are is the key to having an authentic personal brand.
When you are able to acknowledge and cherish the whole of your personal brand, warts and all, you are able to let go of having to act in a certain way, you can relax and share all that you are. From that place, it is easy to find clarity about your purpose and what you want to contribute in all facets of your life.
The delightful things is, when you share all of who you are, you’ll find other people will share the whole of who they are; it has a ripple effect.
Everyone drops the pretences and you have a group of genuine individuals connecting in a heart-felt way. This take on personal brand leaves the proving, impressing, striving to be something you’re not version for dead.
Bring all of yourself to your brand and you will find yourself making more meaningful connections with others, connections that really resonate with who you truly are. People will trust you, and their trust will always be rewarded because you’ve promised nothing more or less than what’s already within you.
For a checklist on ‘How to build your personal brand on LinkedIn’ email firstname.lastname@example.org
Click here to see our top 25 personal brand questions
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