personal branding photos by britneygardner.com

Musings on work, passion and branding

I read a lot over the Thanksgiving weekend, and for once, not a bit on my Kindle. I read a lot of blog articles. Thought leaders. Musings. And one that came up a lot was this quote. We’ve all seen and heard this quote. Probably a lot. Maybe even 17 times a week. “Choose a job you love and you will never have to work a day in your life.”

According to the internet, Confucius said that. Confucius is oft-cited, but do you ever stop and wonder why he would say that? He was a caretaker of sheep and later an advisor. In his era, one did not exactly choose a job. The concept was just foreign. You did what your family did. You worked to farm food. You ruled if you were born into the elite. That was pretty much it. Well, as it turns out, the internet isn’t always right. Shocking, right? This is more likely the quote originator even if the words are off a bit.

Find something you love to do and you’ll never have to work a day in your life.Harvey McKay

But it got me thinking about this whole “work” thing. The thought leaders of today are very different than the thought leaders of the BCs. In today’s world, the “do what you love” movement requires work and effort and strategy. It doesn’t matter how moral, ethical, or clever you are if nobody knows you. If people can’t find you. If you aren’t seen.

I love my work. I love holding a camera in my hand, teasing the inner you out into a moment of time I capture. I love the conversations we have around what is important to you, what you hold dear, what lights you up and sets you into a warrior conversation mode. I love the space I create and that tiny, beautiful flicker of recognition when you realize I’m safe and I see you in all your wonderful uniqueness and I’m here to help you show that. I love this. I love this enchanting, lively entrance into YOU. I tell people my gift is showing what it feels like to work with you and this is how I get there.

But that? That is not work. I live for my calling, I work to make a living at it. And I work a lot of days for it. It’s not always fun. It means I have to do things like take Pilates to keep my posture decent after spending 10 hours a day on my computer. It means I’m occasionally still transferring work to my laptop five minutes after I should have left for the airport. But it means I get to see you. And that makes it all worth it for us both.

The problem isn’t passion. It’s never passion. It’s priorities.Mark Manson

My work allows my passion. My branding leads you to hire me, so that I may fulfill my calling. I focus on the work so that I may enjoy the passion. So I do some of things out there that are a little scary. I hire a business coach, they push me, I make tough decisions, and then I succeed more than before. I put myself out there in ways I haven’t before.

How do you prioritize your work? Where are you hiding? Not putting your whole self in? It may mean finally investing in you, in a personal branding session that allows you to be seen. Be found. Be you.

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