OK…so it has been crazy quiet around here…I know…I know. I could offer all the reasons (excuses) but I will spare us all and not digress. What I will focus on is the fact that I am here and I am back on the soap box with plans to be a regular because everyone that knows me knows I am not a woman of few words.  There is always something to talk about or express right?! Since it’s my first in awhile please indulge me on the length and stay with me to the end!  I’ll strive to keep it shorter next time.

So here is what is on my mind this week.  When people show you who they are…believe them.  Read that again.  Not ‘tell’ you….SHOW you.  This is a concept I am not unfamiliar with and yet I can still be caught off guard or surprised by it.  Sometimes even after a year plus of repetition!!  What do I mean by this? How many times have you had an experience where you can look back and see a pattern in how someone acts vs talks? I can almost always in hindsight see that someone has repeatedly shown me who they truly are and what they really value despite telling me something different. My most recent experiences have been in cases where people talk about who they are and say what is important to them in their business, (don’t we all do this in some form or another?) but behind the curtain, they don’t live it. In fact, there have been times where I watch it in STARK contrast. This has come in the form of how they treat their teams, or service people, their family, talk about their clients or competitors etc.

I have discovered in my years on this planet there are some things (OK, a lot of things) that are specifically important to me come hell or high water.  A couple of them are authenticity and honesty.  It’s kind of simple: Be who you say you are, do what you say you are going to do and tell the truth, not a ‘version’ of the truth or a ‘spin’ and own your shit when you screw something up or drop the ball (personal responsibility is part of truth telling).  In the coaching world these things sometimes seem a bit tricky. I know that sounds totally stupid.  How is authenticity and honesty, for example, ’tricky’? Pretty cut and dried right?! Here is what I mean. I am finding that the more you have to talk about how honest and authentic you are…the less you might really be ‘behind the curtain’ or ‘off the stage’.  If we are authentic, do we have to talk about it all the time? Does it have to appear in every bit of our marketing and do we have to use those specific words every time we take the stage or promote ourselves?  Or do we SHOW it? I am all for marketing and talking about what you do and who you help and HOW you do it.  It is a vital part of a business, and what I am referring to is talking about our values, vs living and demonstrating them.  Live your truth whatever it is.  Own it like a boss.  If you don’t like what is behind the curtain, don’t pretend and fake it and only talk it…walk it and change it.  We are all human.  It is not always neat and tidy back there.  Sometimes life gets messy.  Who hasn’t shoved some shit in a closet or under a bed when unexpected company is coming? I think the key is in how you show up on a consistent basis.

I believe this matters in all aspects of our life, but for a moment, let’s talk about how it relates to business.  How you do anything, is how you do everything. Especially when we are in personal growth and development or business growth and development, who you say you are and how you show up determines your success and longevity in the industry.  What does your business stand for?  What are your values as a company?  How do you like to serve your patrons? What do you want to be said about you in your absence?  I find these things are often aligned with our personal values and moral code….and that is where authenticity comes from in business.  Personal and business codes of ethics and values must be aligned…and demonstrated through action.

How many of you have taken the time to put down on paper your personal vision: what you stand for, how you want to live, who you want to be?  What about your business vision?  Do you see a pattern or parallel between the two?

I recently had this beautiful book made for myself.  You can catch the pictures on Facebook attached to a link to this post on my biz page if you want to see, www.facebook.com/thebalancemaven.  We have all heard about vision boards.  I love them!  I have decided to craft a ‘vision book’ where I will park all my aspirations and things that reflect my life by design.  My hope is that anyone could pick this up and feel like they have a grasp on who I am, what I stand for, and how I choose to live; full of my soul, spirit, and truth.  It will also be a heartfelt representation of my business and how I show up in the world …because what you see is what you get.  I hope for it to be a legacy item, and something that my daughters enjoy spending time with because it is so,…well,  ‘me’.  I secretly (now not so secretly) hope they fight over it when I’m gone and it gets put in ‘timeshare’ where they take turns on who gets to host it. 🙂  Want to do this with me?  Make your own vision book? We could do a free live masterclass online and I can walk you through my process!  I will even share my custom, old school, bookmaker so you can have your own gorgeous, handcrafted book made if you want. Let me know in comments below!

In short….here’s the point of it all. Show the world who you are.  Lead with your actions and your presence, and when you choose to lead with words make sure they consistently match your actions inside and out.  I strive to always do my best at ‘what you see is what you get’  I am far from perfect folks…but my hope is people will always be able to say that I lead by example and that I carry myself with a universal truth on stage and off,  both with clients and with my friends and family.

How do you show up on and off the stage (literal or figurative)?  Is there a difference?   Do your core values come through? I would love to hear your thoughts in comments.  Tell me what this brings up for you or about experiences you have had!

Want to talk about how to craft a business that serves from your place of truth and aligns with your personal values? Click here and drop me a note!

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