Sep 02: I yam what I yam

popeyeDo you know who you are?  That’s a really big question, I know.  You’re probably wondering what on earth does this have to do with social media?  It has everything to do with social media.  How can you be in one of the most social settings possible without knowing who you are?

Do you get up in the morning and really know who you are?  Can you say with emphatic certainty:

– “I am a kind person.”

– “I am a helpful person.”

– “I am a generous person.”

Then, do you go through the day living up to who you say you are?  [Kerplunk – that’s where a lot of people fall off the wagon, I suppose.]

What I loved about Popeye is that he knew who he was, he wasn’t afraid to admit it and then his actions drove the story home.  Every episode had the same premise no matter how many hamburgers Wimpy went through or how many times Brutus would flex his irrational behavior.  Popeye knew who he was.  Who wouldn’t want to be like this?

For me, I know that I said for years, “I enjoy serving other people.”  I wasn’t sure I was living up to that statement though.  I now go through my day cognizant of that branding – wearing it like Popeye’s tattoos for all to see:  I am someone who enjoys serving others.  It’s what’s in my heart (one of those Kingdom Purposes I talked about a few weeks back) and because I live what I say, I don’t feel the external pressures of life anymore.  No identity crisis.

I worked at a job once where I tried to be somebody that I wasn’t.  They had so many rules and policies that were against who I was fundamentally as a person that I lived in constant strife.  It affected my health, my relationships, my religion, and shook my core being.  I would internally wrestle with trying to keep a paycheck coming in vs. wanting to throw it all to the wind and say, “Screw this!”  [I opted for the latter 2 1/2 years ago.  NO regrets!]

When you know who you are – it makes life not only easier for you, but those around you.  It’s very difficult to interact with someone and support them when that person has no direction, no clue, no purpose.  It’s an enormous relief to others when they know what you stand for – and your actions speak louder than your words do.  You can then serve others from a position of strength because you know who you are rather than make a lame attempt to be helpful when you’re struggling if you even want to do this in the first place.

Social media has this incredible sixth sense.  Yes – we do see dead people.  People who have no life inside of them.  People who are going through the motions of social media [posting, tweeting, connecting, etc.] with no vibrancy behind it.  That doesn’t make you social.  It makes you dead and it dilutes the value of social media as a whole.  It puts a scarlet letter on you as a person to NOT do business with in the social space.  Now, you’ve defeated the entire purpose of why you got involved with social media to begin with…

Rick Warren said something that jolted me:  “Until you overcome your insecurity and feel good about yourself, you won’t feel like helping anyone else.”  It’s so true.

Look at your behaviors – what do they tell you about yourself?  I challenged you a few days back to look at your Facebook status updates and Twitter tweets for the last month – what do they say to others about you?  Want to get really raw?  Ask your friends to be CANDID and tell you privately what they think.  You can’t go hatin’ on them when you asked for real feedback though.  Remember, they love you and if they can be vulnerable to share something about you to be a better person, then love them more for their honesty.  Do not get angry with their words.  Remember Rafiki said in The Lion King “You don’t even know who you are!”

Find the answer to this – and find yourself in the process.  You’ll be a better person online and definitely offline.

Sheryl Brown / @BionicSocialite

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