… a revelation, coming to your senses. There are many names for it, but they all lead to the same outcome: Clarity. Today harboured one of those moments of clarity, one I feel will stay with me for just a while.
Any of you who know me will know one thing: I am deeply unhappy in my day job. I feel unfulfilled, restless, and am trying to escape at every given moment. The job, as much as I hate to say it, has become ‘just about the money’.
I hate that phrase. I hate it with every fibre of my being. You know why? When a job becomes ‘just about the money’, the reason you took that job no longer exists. You don’t feel passionate enough about the job to do the best you can, you don’t feel the purpose and fulfilment that would lead you to do greater things, you don’t really ‘feel’ at all.
You spend each day plodding along, not knowing where you are going, or from where you came. Each hour merges into the last, and every customer/interaction becomes the same. It’s a horrible state to be in, but one that too many find themselves in.
Today’s epiphany, from a conversation with a part-timer at work, was this:
“The work I truly enjoy doing, I don’t expect people to pay me for”
I love copywriting, and that is why I find it hard to justify a price at the end of the process. I do random work here and there for the school I used to work at, and never expect a penny from then. Why? Because I enjoy it. It gives my life purpose. The feeling of completion, purpose, and having done a good thing, to me, outweighs the monetary gain.
Does this mean I’m going to stop charging for my work? No. Unfortunately purpose, pride, and fulfilment don’t pay the bills. What it does mean is that I may not charge as much as I should. That I may just randomly do a job for you, and ‘forget’ to charge. What it means is, I’m happy to help; and I’m not just here for the money.
We live in a social world. A world where every person, business, cat, and tree is supposed to have a Facebook or Twitter account; and are supposed to update it hourly. In seconds your opinion, feelings, likes, hates, and whatever else can be on the internet and in front of an audience of hundreds, or thousands, or even millions.
These tweets, statuses, likes, +1s, etc form your personal brand. They are what people see when they search for you, and what they will see when you interact with them. How you conduct and compose these interactions will weave into a personal brand, for better or for worse. This can show you as a hard working professional, a lazy layabout, an inventive and creative person, someone who loves logic, someone who lives for the moment, or someone who hates life and all of it facets. You don’t always think you are saying, and that’s cool, ‘cos it represents you.
But then you look at working on your business brand. You think hard about how you want your business to appear to outsiders, customers, and stakeholders. You spend hours thinking about wether you want to appear to be Young, Hip and Trendy; or Longstanding, Professional, and Serious (or anywhere in between). Tweets, Statuses, Likes and other social network interactions under your business’s brand are closely scrutinised, thought about, and rehearsed before they are ever put into the real world. This thought and attention to detail helps work towards a goal.
And then you link your personal and business brands, by mentioning them in the Bio for the others. Suddenly your personal and business brands collide, and people look at both in cohesion. Sometimes this works, but often it does not; as the only reason we separate these brands is because we aren’t confident enough that the world will like our personal brand or how it complements our business brand.
Our personal interactions, driven by emotion and our humanity, counter the sense and sensibility we try to express in our business. People see the discrepancy, and the link, and start judging us on both…
Trying out the Tumblet…