In personal branding, we often talk about exuding an X-factor, that ‘je ne sais quoi’ that can differentiate one’s personal brand from others. But what about an Oomph factor…that sense vivacity, energy and excitement that radiates outwards? This month, the fabulous Caroline Carr from www.findyouroomph.com shows us how to add a little Oomph to our personal brands!
It’s February – the shortest month of the year. How do you feel right now? Excited, curious and energized as you look forward to Spring and the fresh, new possibilities that season brings? Or do you feel fed up, tired and dull – drained by the winter, and daily struggles?
If you are the latter, you’re lacking in Oomph – and that impacts on your personal branding, as you’ll be perceived as either lacklustre and uninterested, or insincere. You may be trying so hard to be as you think you need to be that others feel slightly uncomfortable and wary in your presence, and they may question your sincerity and integrity.
Oomph in its truest sense is that profound sense of aliveness that makes your heart soar and allows you to shine. It’s much, much more than ‘get up and go’ though. Oomph goes deep – it’s a lasting inner quality that keeps you connected to your true self, and therefore aligned with freedom, balance, fun and joy. It’s infectious too, as Oomph-suffusion brings with it energy, enthusiasm and sparkle – qualities that tend to attract others.
Your Oomph is always there, but sometimes it’s eclipsed by other things in life, and in some cases it’s buried so deep inside that you’ve forgotten what it feels like. You can reconnect with it again though – much more easily than you might think. Having been a coach and therapist for many years, I have developed an empowering process called Oomphwork, which enables your authentic self to shine brightly, and without having to really try.
Here’s some very basic Oomph groundwork – tips that you can use straight away to add sparkle to your personal brand:
The first three go together. Do these every day:
- Get up early and get cracking. You may do this already, but if you don’t – it’s time to start. I and many others have found that early rising gives you a ‘head start’ (literally). Your mind is clearer, it’s easier to focus, and you tend to be more productive. Ok so you may feel groggy to start with, but that soon passes.
- Catch your thoughts on waking. Those first few thoughts are crucial as they set the tone for the entire day. This is because as you emerge from sleep your subconscious mind is particularly receptive to whatever thoughts are dominant. So focus immediately on something that is positive for you. Remind yourself to do this – post it notes by the bed, or whatever works best for you.
- First thing in the morning is a great time to spend a few minutes in quiet contemplation, and with an attitude of gratitude. Gratitude settles the emotions and sends a powerful positive message to your subconscious. Really feel grateful – the energy of your emotions is every bit as (if not more than) important than your thoughts. Hone in on the minute details of your life first. People often say: “Oh I’m thankful all the time for stuff” in a slightly dismissive way. That’s merely going through the motions. Give yourself time to feel. Enjoy the sense of calmness that brings.
It’s important to do the above consistently. Developing a regular ‘practice’ on waking not only makes a massive difference to how you feel, but it keeps you grounded and connected with your inner self. Let it be a pleasure though – never a chore. So find the best way that works for you.
Oomph boosters throughout the day:
- Be endlessly curious, and open and receptive to new ideas. Curiosity paves the way to endless new possibilities. Stretch yourself, and think outside of the box.
- Keep a collection of inspirational, positive and amusing words, quotes, jokes, poems etc handy. You can refer to these whenever you please to give you a boost and to trigger ideas.
- Look for the fun and the new in everything, and welcome any opportunities to play – as might a child. Be silly! This may seem childish, but it’s not. Playing opens new neural pathways in the brain, and helps you to problem-solve more effectively. Never underestimate the power of play.
- Move your body, stretch frequently and BREATHE. Dance and sing (even if you think you can’t). Let exercise be fun for you – why put pressure on yourself to do something you don’t enjoy just because it’s supposed to be good for you? Let there be a sense of ease and flow and freedom about this.
- Smile and laugh frequently, even if you think you have nothing to laugh about. Grinning for one minute starts to raise the feel-good hormones and lower the stress ones (though it may make your face ache!) and laughter accelerates the process. You don’t always need jokes or humour to laugh – just laugh out loud. If you think that’s impossible, start with “Hahahahahahahaha” a few times. You’ll soon find yourself giggling for real. Embrace that sense of childlike playfulness, because if you’re determined that laughing for no reason is impossible and it won’t work – then for you, it probably won’t. You can easily laugh in public too – just pretend that you’re having a hilarious conversation with someone on your phone. No-one will ever know that there’s nobody at the other end.
- Give yourself what you need. Sunlight, fresh air, good food, and adequate rest. Rest and relaxation is vital to sustaining your Oomph, and it’s important to do absolutely nothing at all sometimes in order to replenish yourself and just ‘be’. Often the greatest ideas, clarity and inspiration come in these quiet, restful moments, so allow yourself to have this time.
- Take a break, and go somewhere. A little time away can be a great Oomph-booster, as you’re likely to come back recharged and with a fresh perspective. (You might like my Oomph Experience Retreat in Ibiza in May.)
Personal branding is about YOU, so let your true light shine through. Let others see the real you – empowered, fun, free and living fully in your Oomph.