5 personal branding tools to get you through the ‘dark days’
For most of us, what we do professionally affects the way that we view ourselves personally, too. It’s something that for the most part we can’t help, especially since the majority of our time (40 hours per week for five days out of the week, at the very least) is spent at work. But, what happens if you lose your job? An identity crisis may sound drastic, but it is actually all too common.
Lisa Orban, psychologist and personal branding consultant of Golden Notebook says, “It’s at times like these, when you’re often in danger of losing your sense of self, that revisiting your personal branding can help you navigate your way.”
While personal branding has the marketing, buzzword connotation for the way you present yourself professionally, it can also guide you outside of your career and remind you of your authentic self in your personal life during times of extreme stress and bad moods.
Even the stars, whose professional lives seem pristine, have expressed personal struggles with depression stemming from the spotlight’s harsh critical light, no doubt, including Oprah Winfrey, Catherine Zeta Jones and Gwyneth Paltrow. Orban attributes their motivation to push forward to be likely linked to their strong sense self via personal branding.
Having trained and practised in New York City for eleven years before relocating to London, chartered clinical psychologist, Orban has helped clients make a name for themselves by discovering their distinct and authentic personal brand. She takes a unique approach to personal branding that combines psychological assessment and theory with branding strategies to create for powerful and enduring individual change and personal impact.
Here are her top five personal branding tools to try this year.
Reflect on your strengths.
When you’re down, negative thoughts or failures swirl in a vicious circle in your head. Cut through the negativity by thinking about the things you are good at.
“When depressed or down it’s easy to let only negative thoughts and criticisms make it through your filters, but looking back at your intrinsic personal strengths will remind you of the things you really are good at,” Orban says.
“These haven’t gone away. You may be currently looking at them through murky glasses, but it can help to know that when those glasses do come off, your strengths are still there. Try drawing on these strengths as best you can while feeling down.”
Remember your values.
Reminding yourself of your values such as family, social responsibility or fitness, will point you towards those things that will make you feel more “you” and help you take care of yourself.
“Whilst you may have to put some on hold for a while (such as getting into Triathlon level fitness), living by your values day to day can help provide a sense of direction during the dark days, and may even provide comfort,” Orban says.
Reconnect with your purpose.
It is not uncommon to feel detached or even lost when depressed, and even if you’re not up to full speed just yet, Orban recommends still trying to do something that supports your purpose: “This will keep you working towards your goals, as well as help boost self esteem.”
Spruce up your outer brand.
When we are going through a difficult time it’s easy to let ourselves go. The call of sweatpants and dry shampoo for way too many days can be louder than ever. But, addressing the outside can positively impact the way you feel inside.
Revisiting your outer branding, Orban explains, will remind yourself what actually suits you and is appropriate for what you want to be doing with your life.
“Everyone tends to feel better when they dress up a little, or dress in a way that suits them, and this tiny detail can make a massive difference not only to how you feel, but also how others around you treat you which again has a knock on effect on your own state of mind.”
Looking at what your role models have been through and how they have coped with tough situations can be very inspiring. Lisa suggests that this is a time to be patient and kind to yourself.
“Have realistic expectations. Thinking you can move from being permanently glued to the sofa to throwing yourself back into work 110% is asking a lot of yourself. The best goal is to spend time looking after yourself so you can start feeling back to normal. Look at getting the proper treatment and support you need, and don’t think of depression as a sign of weakness. We don’t judge ourselves for getting the flu….”
Photo courtesy by Shutterstock images via Inc.