Personal Branding – Step by Step

So, the four basic questions that need to be answered are:

  • Who Are You?
  • What Do You Do?
  • Who Do You Serve?
  • What Kind of Experience Do You Want People To Have When Your Name Comes Up?

If these four questions aren’t enough to make your head spin, then you are further down the path of self discovery than I am!  Heck, despite my first post, I’m still really on question 1.  I keep getting it mixed up with question 2.

Despite my typical learning style (glance through the questions, jump to question 4, get bogged down in the muck, realize I need more basic knowledge/information, then begin on question 1), I am bound and determined to do this one correctly the first time.  After all, isn’t that really what we all want to know?  Who are we, really?  Not the superficial facade we developed over the years to please those outside ourselves (or, for some of us, we didn’t necessarily want to please, we wanted to prove to others we are/are not who they expected us to be).

To many people out there, I am ~cough~ a foul mouthed, crude, rude, opinionated bitch who’s just itching for a fight.  I don’t care about anyone’s opinions that differ from my own.  Also, once you cross me, I’m done with you.  Period.  I saw this on Facebook and immediately had to share it, since this was my parenting style:

Doormat

To some, I am the quiet one who sits in the corner, observing.  I smile and nod in agreement despite the fact that I think what they are saying/doing is bat-shit crazy.  Actually, this is what made me so good at my role of abused girlfriend.  I did such a good job of hiding what was going on behind closed doors that still, to this day (22 years later), many still do not believe me.  Heck, even my father didn’t believe me at the time.  So, I don’t talk about it.  That’s why so few people (until reading this post) have any idea I was in such a situation.

Then, to others, I’m the joker.  I have a sick sense of humor.  I will never reveal to anyone outside my immediate family some of the things that have me laughing so hard, I begin to sob.  Without laughter, I don’t really see a point in living.  Maybe that’s why, out of all the superheros out there, I have embraced Batman the least:

So, who am I?  I know I am a mix of all three of these personas (depending on the situation) but how do I turn that into a definition of who I am?  What makes me tick?  I guess it’s time for me to pull out pen and paper because I still don’t know.  How about you?

In case you are unable to take the Lynda.com course on Personal Branding Basics, here are some links I found that may help you in this journey:

This one has an annoying pop-up that appears every time you move the cursor too high or low on the page but I really like the way they have their guide setup:

http://www.quicksprout.com/the-complete-guide-to-building-your-personal-brand/

This one I liked because of the title 🙂 :

http://mashable.com/2014/11/10/personal-branding-lazy-guide/

And this one is by Pricewaterhouse Cooper for college students:

http://www.pwc.com/us/en/careers/campus/programs-events/personal-brand/index.jhtml#overview

And please take a look at the links I have over there (pointing my finger to wherever my links are being displayed).  I will be adding to the list as I discover more gems of knowledge online.

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Who Am I?

This is the purpose for a completely separate blog.  As too many people know, I have Attention Deficit Disorder.  I wear that like a badge of honor.  I love to learn.  Learn what?  Well, just about anything that catches my eye!  I also love to share what I learn.  That is why I have three You Tube Channels (well, 4 if you want to count the one that I have, for all intents and purposes, abandoned), three blogs, two Twitter accounts, two Facebook pages in addition to my main profile and one royally messed up website.  I know not everyone is like me (mentally scattered) so I do my best to compartmentalize the treasures I find online.  One cool little feature I discovered on here (WordPress) is a little widget for Goodreads!  So, pop over here (to this blog) if you are ever bored and want to take a gander at what I’ve been reading.  The list resembles a Jackson Pollock painting!  🙂

So, last month’s Winter Solstice.  That is really what this post (and blog) are about.  For the first time, it felt like that was the dawning of a new year/new phase in my life.  I can’t explain why.  As the night wore on, it felt as if the clouds were parting.  I cannot think of a better way to describe it but that is when I went a-searching online for some way to figure out who I really am and what I want to be when I grow up.

Explaining my search paths online is worse than trying to tell someone my train of thought when I blurt out a totally random observation. So, simply put, somehow I stumbled onto a tutorial on Lynda.com (I think it was somehow through Dave Conrey of Fresh Rag but don’t quote me). It is Personal Branding Basics with Lorrie Thomas Ross.  It is geared toward the career-minded professional but it got me thinking:  Who am I?  What is my role in this life?  How do I want to be portrayed to the world? Most importantly, how do I want to be remembered?

Do I really only want people to remember me for posting smart-assed memes and videos on Facebook?  Not really.  I have always wanted those who have known me to somehow feel enriched by the experience (well, except for those individuals who, if they magically dropped off the face of the earth I would not mourn) but feel like I have failed miserably.  This is why I strayed away from survivalist topics (for the most part) a few years ago.  It’s such doom and gloom.  You can only point out how corrupt the government is so often without it becoming oppressive (not to mention depressing and a bit fatalistic).

So, here I am having, what seems like a bit of a mid-life crisis (no, mid-life discovery).  This is where the entire journey begins and will be chronicled.  Are you ready for it?  🙂