Why Getting Lost Is Key To Brand Clarity

Am I a fraud?

I sit there grappling with my own integrity.

How can I say I help you embody your brand and own your magic, if I’m struggling to show up and be truly visible myself? 

If I’m questioning who I am and what I do? If I can’t be myself in MY OWN brand, how can I help you be YOU in yours?

But of course I can help. I know how to be me or how to help you be you in your brand. Of course I know how to show up and build a brand. I’ve been showing up online, building my brand and helping other people with theirs for years. I am helping people now, too. I can see the difference my support can make, too.

Being stuck in my own brand isn’t what makes me “unqualified.”

It’s what makes me uniquely able to and positioned to help you figure out how the heck to be yourself in your brand.

Because it’s not really as simple as giving advice on how to “show up” online.

That would be SO easy.

Here: get on insta stories, post every day, film yourself talking, and so on an on and blah di dah di dah… You’ll get more visible as a result. Everyone can dish out that advice. And every goddamn biz, marketing, content and brand coach does (yawn…). 

It works, too – you get seen and known more.

But simply posting consistently and showing your face every day doesn’t get you seen and know for who you truly arewhat you’re truly capable of and the depths of what you have to offer. So quality results of “consistent visibility” aren’t guaranteed. 

Nope, it’s not enough to just post every damn day on your socials, add a couple of photos of your face on your website and call it a day. Not for you to be seen and know the way you truly crave to be seen and know. The way your brand gets to be seen and known, when you build one that is truly aligned to who you are.

Simply being visible every day doesn’t set you apart from all the other artists, makers, healers, entrepreneurs in your niche that also “get visible” every damn day. Maybe more so than you. If all it took to stand out, be noticed and become an industry leader was getting visible, then posting daily would surely be key to everything. If all it took to build connection and trust with your right people and get paid well for your hard work, unique talents and gifts was daily dose of visibility, it would be a quick fix to a lot of our business woes.

Whilst being visible gets you seen, it doesn’t necessarily get you truly recognised. Or at least not by the right people. So it doesn’t always lead to positive return on all the energy, time and resources invested in that visibility.

“Just post every day”

“Just show your face”

“Just be yourself”

It’s not helpful advice. It’s just an empty promise of an easy hack.

Visibility is important. But it’s not enough to “just be more visible.”

Given the reality of what it actually takes to build a brand, create content, show up online, be visible consistently (in a way that doesn’t make you want to scream and throw your phone in a nearby river every other day), invite the right people in, hold their attention, nurture your community, build trust and have your dreamiest people seeking out what you have to offer consistently… this kind of advice, in the ever-changing online landscape, is as good as fucking useless.

I’ve done the song and dance of visibility. I’ve been “myself” in my brand and gotten visible online. I’ve done it for years. It was a no-brainer for me. I wasn’t great at the “post consistently” (another reason why that’s crap blanket advice that just leads to burnout is a story for another day) so I definitely didn’t grow as fast as I could have, but I was always very good at being me. The real-life connections I built online, the dreamy clients I got to work with over the years didn’t come to me, because I was the most visible, but because I was so me. It helped me set myself apart in a saturated industry and it helped me be recognised for my unique gifts, too.

And then I changed. My life changed. My business changed. 

And I got stuck. 

I stopped being as visible. I stopped creating as much. I stopped showing my face as much. I didn’t forget how to. But I couldn’t “just do it” anymore.

In all that change, I unravelled a lot of who I was, what I valued, what I was seeking. I redefined the meaning of so many things in myself, my life and my business.

I couldn’t just get visible. And be myself online. 

Because I didn’t know who I was anymore. And when I started to figure that out, I couldn’t just show up the way I used to. Because it wasn’t me anymore. I knew there had to be a new way forward, but I couldn’t see the woods for the trees for a while.

Yet, I kept expecting myself to keep showing up consistently. I’d keep getting frustrated with myself for not managing to. But how could I do something consistently, when I didn’t even really know where to start? 

Not because I didn’t know how. The practical steps, the principles, the strategies. Those I know. But because I didn’t know why.

How could I be myself online, take up space and own my magic when I wasn’t really sure what any of that was anymore. When I was questioning everything…

No wonder I’ve been feeling like I wasn’t walking the talk.

But the truth is. That’s exactly what walking the talk looks like.

Showing up how you think you “should” be online or how everyone else is doing it is easy. Dead fucking easy.

It’s why the online world is full of the same old tricks, trends, and brands that look and sound the exact fucking same. Because it’s easy to follow the step-by-step formulas, the rules, the hacks and the tricks.

What’s not so easy is to be authentic, genuine, truly yourself. Especially so when you’re in the thick of it. When you’re questioning who you are and why you’re here. When you’re not sure what you want.

When you’re in that place, you’re not supposed to just know how to show up and shine your light. When you’re lost in the woods, you can’t just keep walking in the same direction you’ve been walking all along. You’re supposed to accept that you’re lost and take your time to figure out where you are, so you can find your way through. 

I created new offers to support you that don’t just take you the fastest way to the finish line, a.k.a. the shiny version of you, the one you think will sell, but help you navigate through the woods. Because I realised that my role as a brand guide is to help you go from feeling totally lost, uncertain of whichever direction you look at, to finding your way through. Not teleporting your way out, but helping you understand where you are and find your way through the woods step-by-step.

Much like in the old folk tale about Baba Yaga. You’re not supposed to go into the woods, meet the wise witch (that’s your internal wisdom), learn everything all at once (or you’ll grow old too quick, she’s quick to warn you) and head back out ASAP.

No, you’re supposed to go deep, stay awhile, do the hard work, and learn just enough so that the light of your new-found knowledge can guide you back home. And you’re supposed to return. Cyclically. So you can know yourself deeper over time.

The irony?

It’s fucking tattooed on my arm. 

As a reminder that we’re never done, that we have to go into the dark again, because it’s how we know ourselves better over time. But here we are.

I forgot that I wasn’t supposed to know everything. Or make it out of the woods without doing the hard work.

I was supposed to sit there, sifting the stack of hay looking for a needle. I was supposed to try and wear down the wooden shoes. To do the stuff that feels hard, feels impossible. Because true wisdom isn’t found easily, but earned the hard way.

You don’t build a brand that feels like you, that’s truly aligned without doing the messy, the confusing, the arduous work. 

If you were just given a map out, you wouldn’t learn how to find our own way home. So when you get there, you’d be none the wiser. 

You can’t walk towards self-knowledge by following someone else’s map. You can’t short-cut your way to knowing yourself better. You can’t hack your way to clarity. And you sure as hell can’t just keep doing what you’ve always done, or what everyone else is doing, to find a new, more aligned way forward.

You have to sit in the dark woods.

You have to let yourself be with the confusion, the silence, the fog. Before the fog can lift, the path can clear, and you can find your way out again.

So here I am, writing to you from the woods. Where the fog is lifting, the path is clearing and I can see a way forward again.

I am not going to pretend that I’ve arrived. That I know how my future will look like forever. That my inner brand work is done now and I can just go “be myself” on the internet without any doubts or confusion again.

No, I am still figuring it out and feeling my way through. But now I know that this is the process that deserves my time. Because the old ways aren’t me anymore.

Because I can’t can just do what I used to and expect new results. 

There’s a reason I stopped, a reason it didn’t feel right and didn’t work anymore. I was showing up as if I was the old me. When I wasn’t. And so the results felt misaligned. 

And we all know that Einstein quote: “Insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.”

So here I go, finding a new way to be me online. And helping you be yourself online in new ways, too.

If you’re feeling lost in the fog, but are ready to find your way out of those foggy woods and make aligned and intentional changes in your brand from a place of clarity and trust that it’s what you and your brand needs – I created Brand Calibration: Brand Vision & Review Workbook for you.

This blog post was originally shared as part of the Trail Notes – a regular email series where I take you behind the scenes and alongside me on my own brand-building adventure. If you enjoyed this and would like more, you can see another example here and here. If you’d like to receive more insights and reflections on the brand journey directly to your inbox – join the Trail Notes here.