This week I want to do things a little differently. I want to discus or more so use affirmations as a jumping off point. If you don’t know what affirmations are, they’re kinda like a phrase or a sentence that you say, too sort of create or reinforce a new belief or reality. I know that you’re probably thinking, “erm that’s a little wacky and out there.” But just hear me out, if I’m being totally honest i’ve gone back and forth with affirmation whether they work or not. And It click as to why sometime they do and don’t, similar to how brand do and don’t work.
“We Have To Feel Our Affirmations For Them To Be Authentic”
I was listening in the car to the radio headspace podcast. A podcast I absolutely love and have it linked (here) I would highly recommend. I think the lady was called Dora on this episode and she was talking about affirmations in a really interesting way. Something that resonated with me is she said that “we have to feel our affirmation for them to be authentic.” So rather than just saying the words out loud, we actually have to listen to what they mean. Try to picture it and bring that feeling into that moment. I took a few seconds and then thought yeah that’s actually kinda obvious, and yet I know in the past I’ve just said the words and hope it would just become reality!
I carried on driving obviously with this thought bouncing around in my head and then I started to make some connections with affirmations and branding. There is a lot of misconception about branding out there. So just to give you a quick and simple refresh about branding. It’s like this vacuum of meanings that your people carry in their minds about you. As a brand strategist and designer we help you shapes these meanings. But first have to predetermine what your brand is all about before we can shape and mould it in a specific way. So going back the connection I made was we actually have to feel our brands for them to be authentic too. If you’ve been on a brand designer website you’ve probably seen the word alignment. This word is used a lot. What we mean or I mean is that we build a brand in alignment to what you currently already value and believe in life and your small business.
What’s stopping us from lying within our brands?
If we didn’t, build a brand this way, I would feel we are being dishonesty and inauthentic. And really what would stop us form just making up a brunch of meanings for your brand. Like you cares for the environment or quality. If you don’t actually care about the environment or quality of your product that’s going to be a difficult value to uphold long-term. It’s not going to feel good and
It’s more likely to increase the chance of imposter syndrome. It’s kinda like forcing yourself to eat a piece of food everyday that you feel impartial too or worst case scenario hate. Let’s face it at some point you’re going to turn around and just say I don’t like it. It’s not going to stick long-term. So similar to affirmation in order to be authentic you have to believe what you’re brand believes to a certain degree. When a person doesn’t really believe in what they’re putting out into the world, they are putting a lot at risk. They are putting that trust they are trying to build at risk. And when it doesn’t pay off, people will start to wonder, “If they said they cared about that, when they didn’t …what else are they saying they do or believe that they really don’t?
Long discussion getting to know you
This is why when working with a brand designer we need to have these long discussions about you, your business and brand at the start. I believe in order for one-women business to use their brand they really have to feel it, they have to feel confident clear, believe and understand in the brand approach that I’ve helped created for them. Creating a brand shouldn’t be a seen as this one way transaction. If a designer is not taking on board you there more like to create something generic, that could be suitable for a few different businesses. This brand approach after a short amount of time, might be like useless affirmation. You’ll be saying these values, messaging and meanings that they have been written for you, but you wont really feel them. They’ll start to become more meaningless.
Before you leave remember
So if you’re thinking of hiring a brand designer. It’s a bit like a dance or cooking together where you should have both pairs of your hands in the pie. Yeah sure, it’s going to get a little messy in the middle of the process. But that really that our problem to clean up and make sense out of everything. A piece of advice is don’t let your brand designer decided everything for you. Otherwise is it really your brand? And remember your brand designer is going to be the one growing and nurturing it everyday either. So don’t be force to like a a piece of food or brand approach you know you wont be able to uphold! So similar to affirmations we have to feel them to be authentic, we have to feel clear, believe what our brands value in order to be authentic.
Last week I spoke about brand confusion. We all get confused from time to time and when your brand is confusing. Your people are less likely to give you attention and switch off. I gave some simple tips to help you build a less confusing brand. So if you missed hob back an episode or have a listen after this one.