Recently conversing with a young friend of mine, she recommended a very nice small book called “The Alchemist” by Paulo Coelho. The book is a story of a young shepherd in search of what the author calls his personal legend. The book is an easy read and surprisingly I had the time to read it in a couple days.
The book makes the case for everyone having a personal legend a destiny if you desire to see this way. The story makes the case for looking at life as a learning experience. Whether the situation is what you would consider bad, it has an ultimate purpose and can provide a teaching lesson. In the story, the boy had all of his money stolen by a thief in the middle of a trip, and this event caused the young boy to seek employment with the owner of a glass shop. While he was working at the glass shop, he learned much from the people he interacted with, as well as learning to speak another language.
While reading the book it made me reflect on my own personal life and those events that I thought were “bad” that actually made me into the person I am today.
My own personal legend had its own turns and it is only when I reflect on it that I see the positive effect. Some events that I thought were bad that were actually very good for me:
I grew up in Mexico City with a very nice family. My father was an entrepreneur and my mother was a housewife. I was the oldest of three and the only male. I always thought that not having a brother was a bad situation. This led me to appreciate the incredible male friendships that I have yet today after 45 years. They are my friends and call themselves my brothers. I then came to the USA and stayed with a family who had a two year old boy, he became my brother and he doesn’t remember a day without me. He is an uncle to my daughters and I am uncle to his.
While studying at the University of Minnesota, my father who was responsible for all of my financial affairs gave me two options: comeback to Mexico and go to the best Private University or find a job to pay for your expenses and stay in Minnesota. I had very good grades and INS (immigration and naturalization service) gave me authorization to work, rare for everyone. I believe it was a sign that I was meant to stay in MN. I became a janitor at the time, and I disliked it very much, but as I think back it was one of the best things that happened to me. I learned about hard work, sweat a bit, and the overall experience humbled me a bit. I learned the value of a dollar and finished my degree on my own with scholarships.
In 1985 I fell in love with a Minnesota girl. She introduced me to her parents and family and we were together for over two years. I knew it would not work for us long-term, but I really liked my relationship with her father and step-mother. I talked to her father and step-mother and told them I didn’t want to lose my relationship with them. They agreed and our friendship continued for over thirty years. Her father was my best man when I got married to my current wife. Without knowing her I would not have met her parents, my friends ?
The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho — Amazon
Do you believe we all have a personal legend or destiny?
Do you think you know what your personal legend is?
What life experience you thought it was bad, has made you a better person?
Are you following your personal legend?
Wanted to speak to you about “Personal Brand Legacy” — Let me explain what I mean.
Particular characteristic that serves to identify a particular product or service. In this case a person’s legacy.
“The gift you will leave behind”
Personal Brand Legacy ——> How do you want to be remembered?
“I have come to reflect upon my life and realized that life today is different from what I thought it was or what it would look like. A few years ago, I realized something important and I want to share it with you. I hope it helps you in your own lives, or at least make you think and reflect upon your life. These lessons helped me to create what I want my brand legacy to be.
A few years ago, I was volunteering at our church and helped set-up a room. I did my job and helped, but there was this particular guy by the name of Tom Sweeney. He did the job plus much more and always did the extra effort and it was very noticeable. After a few days of working together I asked Tom, “Hey Tom, why are you so eager to help and work so hard?” He asked me if I had a few minutes to hear an interesting story. I agreed and told me a great story!
He Was Just a Mailman
He said, “Ricardo I have a very good education, a very good job, and I’ve earned a lot of money in the past and I thought I was happy. I had a brother who was just a mailman. I looked down on him because I felt I was more educated and earned more money and had more stuff. Certainly, I loved my brother, but I thought he was just a mailman. Then I attended his funeral in Ohio where we grew up. There were hundreds of people outside the church trying to get in to visit my brother. The church was packed to the max, many people came to pay their respects to my brother. You see … he had taken the time to meet the families in his delivery route. He cared for them, he had helped many people, and people loved my brother. Many of them told me stories after the mass of how kind and nice my brother was.
When I came back to MN I reflected upon my life and decided to help older people. I was inspired by my brother, who was just a mailman. He tried his best and I asked myself how many people would come to my funeral?”
“We ALL have the power to change people lives”
Let me introduce you to Nick. I watch this video when I need some inspiration. Born in Australia, he has inspired millions of people around the world.
Hope you enjoyed this, he is an amazing person. Now married and has a child a very inspiring person!
Your deeds are your monuments!
J. Palacio’s Quote
“…We should be remembered for the things we do. The things we do are the most important things of all. They are more important than what we say or what we look like. The things we do outlast our mortality. The things we do are like monuments that people build to honour heroes after they’ve died. They’re like the pyramids that the Egyptians built to honour the Pharaohs. Only instead of being made out of stone, they’re made out of the memories people have of you. That’s why your deeds are like your monuments. Built with memories instead of with stone.”
Resources ::::: No Arms, No Legs, No Problem: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ciYk-UwqFKA
Butterfly Circus Movie (20 minutes): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p98KAEif3bI&t=1210s
One Act of Kindness: www.oneactofkindness.org
- What do you think is your brand legacy ?
- What would you like it to be?
- What are steps you can take to enhance your personal brand legacy?
You should at least think how you would like to be remembered!
Do you want a few people at the end or a lot of people?
What Is Your Brand?
We all have a brand, whether you are aware of it or not. I will define this as the thoughts that come to you about a person and the character you perceive them to be. To give you a better idea of what I mean please do this exercise.
Get a pen and paper and write three thoughts after reading the name of the person below.
What came to mind for you? Tirant, antichrist, killer?
For the Nazi regime he was an idol, a leader. He is also given a lot of credit for pulling Germany out of an economic depression and improving their economy during his regime. Depending on who you are, a different perspective can be taken about the same person. How you are affected by the person directly or indirectly can influence your opinion.
Let’s do it again, with this person:
What came to mind for you as you read it? Humble, caring, Catholic?
For Catholics around the world he is a very caring person, a humble individual, and a transformational leader. Something unique about him is that many people who are not affiliated with the Catholic Church also like him. Others in the same position have approached this role differently. For me, Pope Francis is a very nice man and inclusive of everyone.
I like to play a game with friends to exemplify my point about the personal brand.
Let me give it to you. It is actually fun and a good point of discussion at social events for me. Imagine you are in a restaurant in a booth and behind you there are three of your closest friends. They don’t know you are there and they start talking about you.
What would you like them to say about you? We can try to be what we want them to perceive us to be, but ultimately we cannot control what people say. For me I would like them to say something like this:
* He is a very caring good friend, always there when I am in need.
* He knows how to enjoy life and loves his family.
* He wears nice shoes all the time ? In my mind this is part of my mojo.
Resources ::::: https://www.forbes.com/sites/forbescoachescouncil/2018/03/20/14-personal-branding-tips-to-help-you-grow-your-influence/#340139627ab7
- What is your brand today?
- What would you like it to be?
- What are steps you can take immediately to enhance your brand?
- What are you willing to do to enhance your brand?
You should define your brand, before others do it for you!