We need to be true to ourselves…
We need to put aside fear and speak from the heart…
We need to find our one true voice…
Boy this sounds good, yet I’ve struggled everyday since I returned to Southern California, to determine just what my true voice is. To be honest, I have a lot of voices rattling around in my head. I love to write about personal development. I enjoy social media and have been trying to learn the ropes of Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.
I love to escape reality, create amazing characters, and put them in exotic locations. I like to give them problems and conflicts and tie the whole thing up in a page turning mystery… yes I like to write fiction.
I also like to give back. I love to teach students how to create a speech, a paper, or a blog post. There is something magical about seeing a light bulb come on as they understand a new concept, or finally figure out a new software program or application.
Yesterday, I ran across a blog post that really opened my eyes. It suddenly made this past week click. My million ideas started to take shape…
I hadn’t given myself permission to truly allow myself to decide who I am. I tended to bend to the experts and acquiesce to their words, yet deep down I knew the tribe I wanted to lead. And since it didn’t fit a particular “safe” model, I was afraid to name it. So I kept safe, twittering and Facebooking all over the map.
This was exactly the way I was feeling. I could see the tribe in my head, along with some fuzzy applications, posts, and books… yet I couldn’t put a name to it. What I could see didn’t have a name… and without a name it was hard to move forward.
I read on into the depths of Mary’s post. She had three main points that helped clarify a lot of complexity into a do-able strategy to move forward.
She did the following…
Ask your tribe. So I asked my audience: “What is my one thing?” My inbox flooded with answers, almost all of which had to do with communicating in an authentic way so people who struggled would find healing. Bingo!
Seek professional help. My friend Guy Richards at Abiah walked me through this process. In the end, after he asked me amazing questions, I wrote this: “To craft and communicate stories in such an authentic way that strugglers find healing and no longer feel alone.” Wow, that was so me! But it took someone gifted in brand management to get me to that place.
Do some soul-searching. Frederick Buechner says that the place that you ought to serve is “where your greatest joy meets the world’s greatest need.” So define that by doing this exercise: List your three favorite movies. (Don’t think about it; just list them.) Now look over your list. What is the common thread in all three? That common thread is typically your passion colliding with the world’s greatest need.
As I looked over her list, I realized that I have some work to do. At the conference I had a chance to mastermind with some of the top experts in personal branding. I realize now that I need to reach out and ask questions.
My top three movies of all time are Vertigo, Rear Window, and Forrest Gump. From the movies, I can see that I like a great story, full of complex personalities and mystery. I like mentors, such as Jimmy Stewart, who aren’t afraid to face fear head on. I also like to see people overcome incredible odds to do things that no one could have ever imagined (Forrest Gump). I also like beautiful locales painted onscreen in technicolor.
Mary came to the conclusion that she had too many tribes. She had to let go of many of them and focus on her one true voice. She then found focus and clarity. Her web traffic tripled after she was able to see her one true calling.
Just reading her list and going over my movies has really helped me see my own story more clearly. But I really could use your help. If you have an opinion about my “one true thing,” from what I’ve listed above, please leave me a comment.
I also have a question for you… What is your one true thing?