Brand insight from Dr. Dannielle Blumenthal on a range of topics. All opinions are the author's own.
Tortured By Your Gift
You may think brand people are a dime a dozen. But I would gladly pay that dime for a moment of their singular value.
Which is this: A brand-minded person can tell you what it is about you, or your product, or your company that sells.
It is shocking to me that people do not know this kind of thing about themselves. After all, don't we spend all of our time pretty much in our own heads? Haven't we grown up immersed in our own companionship?
But settling on an elevator speech - which is to say, developing and implementing a brand strategy - is the single most difficult challenge you will ever face in your life.
Which is why so many of us put it off. I put it off. I don't really like even thinking about it.
But I do think about it, and when I look at you I can tell in less than five seconds who you are and what you are good at. Your gift, what it is you should be doing, in the limited time you have left on this planet.
Don't think for a minute it's an easy thing. Your gift is always difficult. Because life on this Earth equals suffering, not natural joy. And you have a certain task to do to ameliorate it.
For you to do that, somebody had to give you the tools. These are the talents in your brain, your heart and your hands. You already have the equipment.
It's nice to say this as theory, but most of us don't want to think this way. Confronted by talk like this, we shy away - no, we run away - from such "nonsense."
We tell ourselves: "A task? Maybe for others. Not me: I am going to choose my own life."
Of course it feels better to think it's all up to us. Who would want to consider the unpleasant thought that we've all got a job to perform, if you will. A task we must do whether we like it or not.
(Usually when you're doing your life's work, you're happy. But leave that aside for now.)
Even if we can accept the idea of a life's mission, and even if we can relate this idea to a brand, there are many obstacles that tend to confuse us:
Too many choices
The list goes on and on.
But the task you have to do is your brand. Your real brand. The authentic you.
Know it or be ignorant. Believe it or rage.
The truth is, the image you will be happiest projecting, the one that will give you the most meaningful life imaginable, is the one that fits the job that you were made for.
It is your gift.
The sooner you come to terms with it, and stop worrying that you should be someone else with a different set of talents, the happier your life will be.
Even if you never "make it" in terms that Fortune would understand.
Even if your resume has lots of other words, besides "CEO."
Copyright 2015 Dannielle Blumenthal, Ph.D. Dr. Blumenthal is founder and president of BrandSuccess, a corporate content provider, and co-founder of All Things Brand. The opinions expressed are her own.
Dr. Dannielle Blumenthal is an author, independent brand researcher, and adjunct marketing professor with 20 years of varied experience. An avid researcher and prolific, creative writer, Dr. Blumenthal's interests span communication, marketing, qualitative media content analysis, political rhetoric, propaganda, leadership, management, organizational development, and more. An engaged citizen, she has for several years worked to raise awareness around child sex trafficking and the dangers of corruption at @drdannielle on Twitter. You can find her articles at Medium, www.AllThingsBrand.com and www.DannielleBlumenthal.com, and she frequently answers questions on Quora. All opinions are Dr. Blumenthal's own.