Dudes, this post by Maggie on uncovering your personal brand is so well-timed for me. Well, if it had been published any time within the past two years it would have been well-timed. As I've started my career in one field and grown my hobbies and personal interests in another, I've gotten to wondering about how I can blend those two areas of my life better. So that my nine-to-five brand jives a little bit better with my after-hours interests.
To be a little bit clearer but not too overshare-y, I work in the non-profit world. Specifically, in the public policy/advocacy branch of affordable housing, community development and urban affairs. My graduate degree reflects this interest, my current position is clearly in line with this path and my primary volunteer commitment also supports this brand. I am genuinely interested in and excited about what I do.
I'm also genuinely interested in a lot of other things. I blog, sew, crochet, craft, cook, bake and play around with my fancy camera. I'm trying to learn all I can about sustainability (of our food, our planet, our communities, our things) and in the process have become even more interested in eating locally, organics, fair trade and ethics, conscious consumption, simplicity, gardening and agriculture, cheesemaking, old-fashioned craft, country living and the homemade & handmade lifestyle.
And even though I can easily make the argument that my professional and personal interests are totally compatible and blendable and complementary (it all comes down to building strong communities, both locally and globally: decent & affordable housing; access to services, sustainable and efficient transit; respect for food systems and growers; healthy, non-toxic homes and possessions; living each day consciously and compassionately; etc.) sometimes it feels like I'm living dual lives! Papers and research and conferences during the day; homemade ciabatta, crocheted shawls and mung-bean sprouting at night :)
So this is a long-winded way of saying I'll be giving some more thought to my own brand... to reconciling these different areas of my life and embracing them equally. To figuring out the many ways in which my personal endeavors can strengthen my perspective and understanding and effectiveness at the office. To bring it all together and make sense of it!
I have a hunch I'm not the only one in this community that's ever felt like this. Am I right?