I wonder whether you see how amazing you are? As a Personal Branding Photographer, I work with a variety of businesses, but before my camera even gets close to any client. I work with each one, helping them to better understand their brand story, creating personal branding strategies that will help them on their next level.
Seriously do you even know that everything that’s led you to this point has been a journey of knowledge, a collection of experiences which define how you see the world? The key factors will determine whats unique to your brand, and it's these things that will help you leverage a captivating brand.
I don’t just say these things so that you feel great, I say it because like many of you I’ve been there. I’ve sat in a room on my own and actually said to my self
“what do I know??”
To the point, I’d convinced myself that I was unemployable. Which despite being someone who earns there badges, as a mother, self-reliant creative business, graphic designer, that I had grown from a dream and the pens on my table, from the camera in my hands... the training, the courses... had all been for nothing! They amounted to nothing... but I had taught myself to believe that. I eventually put this to the test, and I can say with pride I was all of the above expect unemployable.
It raised the thought - "How was I ever going to inspire others to value me when I was struggling to see how inspiring my story actually was".
Many people don’t believe me when I say, I was a quiet shy young girl, whose only place of comfort and safety was in my bedroom with my artwork. Where I would delve into my imagination and create everything that was within my power... there were no limits to where my imagination would take me. Funny, I think back to that warm cosy room, that was so quiet almost deafening at times. I can still hear the conversations from around the house as they made their way through my blow heater. Strange what you remember isn’t it.
Now, I’m 38 years old, happily married for the past 20 years with to almost fully grown adults. Who help me to keep striving hard for my goals. As a child I watched my father and mother work hard for a business my dad had set up years before I was born. His business was a cafe come restaurant. Actually, his busines would change in style, some decisions I assume were based on his business strategy for gaining more profit, and others I believe were based on his passion. Yet if I told you that my dads training was not as a chef or cook, but in fact he had started his working life as a miner, in a small town situated in Shropshire. You would think why? Well after all his training as a mechanical engineer, and building his career to its full potential, he had become burnt out and decided to invest the money he was earning into property... this building would later be known as the “Cooper Kettle”
I spent all my tiny years, up to the age of 10 until he sold the business and went into building his carpentry business. I don’t think my dad realised how he inspired me. That anything is possible, and change is good.
So, how inspiring is your story? I work with a variety of businesses, but what I like is to get to the meat of the story. Find out what brought you to where you are right now. How did you get here? What did you have to do? How did you educate yourself?
Now, I want to make this one thing clear! If your self-taught DO NOT degrade your education just because you were your teacher. It takes grit, passion and motivation to teach yourself and then to reach your goal. So please, do yourself a favour... and pat yourself on the back. Why? Because there is no certificate for being self-taught, but you learn a heck of a lot along the way, because part of your learning is via trial and error... and not everyone has the Previledge of such valuable learning curves. These problem-solving attributes will see you through many obstacles, issues, that not every academic person sees. You have the reward of the invaluable attribute known as Common Sense. In this case you have a gold star!!
The next aspect is what to leave in, what to add and what should be left well away?
The thing is you don’t have to tell everyone and the cat every cm of your story. You add the parts that give your story authentic meaning, by allowing the real you to shine through. Show them what you’ve learnt, how something makes you feel, or what inspires you most.
If you aren’t sure at this point, become your ideal client.. who is he or she? How do they feel? How do they see the world? What type of person are they?
The truth is your actually your ideal client, and those that are attracted by your words and images will naturally gravitate to you, and it won't be because of cost, it will come down to the value you add to their lives.
I have a wonderful Coach, Yael. We all need a coach, and it's truly helpful... Yael adds delight to my days, every day. By the beauty she shares of the world she surrounds her self with, and she shares that not once, not twice... but as many times as she likes. She doesn’t go on about her business constantly, she is just herself and its because of this that I wanted to work with her. I could see she was my type of friend with qualities I admired and aspired to.
So remember, you are your story and your story is amazing. Say this to yourself everyday! When your in the car, when you get up, while you wash up. But you must say it loud and proud, and you must feel the words. The more you say this the more that choice will be a valid one.
Have a wonderful day...
all my love Michelle xx