When you think you aren't branding, you are. When you think you are branding, you are. Everything you do builds your brand. From your outfits to your friends to your memberships to your enemies to whether you decided to workout 7, 4, or 0 days each week, you are building a brand.
I am Deryle A. Daniels, Jr. and, if you can't tell, personal branding is my area of expertise. I know the way I carry myself will impact my brand, if not immediately, then definitely down the road. Therefore, almost everything I do is intentional and calculated. Whether it is the beard I am currently letting grow or the fact that I choose to get my shirts tailored as opposed to wearing them as bought, I am building my brand. From the consistent use of my middle initial and suffix to electing to draw attention to my name by making it the only bold type on this page, I like to make sure the brand image I am creating for myself is both elite and humble at the same time.
Everyone wants to leave a legacy. I have yet to meet one person whose dream was to be just another number. We want our families and our friends to say "He left us something we can be proud of." Be it a name, memories, money, or anything else that can be valued, no one wants to be forgotten. But these days, what makes you unforgettable is the brand that you develop.
I'll give you an example: Do ever see someone who is always posting on Instagram about their dietary and fitness regimen and think "That person is such a show off?" True as it may be, I also think " That person is extremely disciplined and, in order to get what (s)he wants out of life, (s)he is going to do what it takes." Or maybe you know someone who is always upset and you wonder "Why don't they ever smile?" To me, that either means they have little control over their emotions or they are never happy. Not someone I want to bring on board to represent my company.
In a day and age when everything is just a click away, you have to be aware of the fact that people can and will judge you over the smallest things. And it would be nice to say "I don't care what they think," but it plays a roll in the opportunities you are presented with. Your brand plays an key role in the type of legacy you are able to create and leave behind. Protect it.
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Follow Deryle on Twitter: @DeryleDanielsJr