The LeaderONE Course

Better by Far

People are looking for ways of living whereby they don’t live this fragmented, abstract, work-life that is completely cut off from all the rest of their truly human associations.

Alan Watts

Living an authentic work-life

Over the past year, I’ve been working to define my work and brand more authentically. This effort has been most influenced by the ideas and work of Emily Soccorsy and Justin Foster at Root + River.

Emily and Justin are brand strategists who believe that “every great brand is a spiritual experience” and a “brand is how others experience your soul.” It’s a provocative new way to look at branding that I find very attractive.

For those of us who believe we are here for a purpose, it’s an approach that helps us look more deeply inward to uncover the essence of our work that the world needs to hear and that we need to be.

While I feel I’ve made progress in defining a belief based brand for Forward Thinking Workplaces (Forward thinking narratives will define the great workplaces of the 21st century) and Space Beyond Boundaries (The inner path is the way forward in the 21st century), it’s been a challenge to bring the two together.

It’s made me question whether I should continue to keep both of these businesses moving forward, bring them together in a new way, or let one go.

Recently, I reconnected with Emily and Justin after almost a year to give more attention to defining my overall brand and the number one core belief that best communicates my work and what I believe.

This past week, I came up with a new core belief that defines my overall brand. While I’m not completely satisfied this is “it” yet, I believe it’s a step in the right direction:

We experience our authentic greatness and truth when we live and work from the inside out.

Better by far

This morning while checking my Twitter feed, I discovered this fascinating Tweet with a series of quotes from Alan Watts that I’m sure will inform updates to my brand:

People are looking for ways of living whereby they don’t live this fragmented, abstract, work-life that is completely cut off from all the rest of their truly human associations.

And even though what they do may make very little money, it will at least have the satisfaction of being an actual relationship to the real world in which we live now. I don’t know the detailed answers to all that, but this is what is coming.

It will be very disruptive of things as we know them, but better by far. Better by far to live in contact with the actual here-and-now than to live a life of perpetual suspense, waiting for a gorgeous thing that’s going to turn up—but never, never does.

I can confirm that my path over the past 13 years has been one of progressively moving further and further away from a “fragmented, abstract, work-life that is completely cut off from all the rest” of my human associations.

Yes, I can also confirm that I don’t make nearly as much money as I did when I sold my soul to be part of the economic dream of the Western world.

But I have the enormous satisfaction of being in an actual relationship with the real world, doing work that matters to me and the world.

Traveling this path can definitely be disruptive at times. Especially when making the break from living the status quo.

However, living and working in contact with the actual here-and-now is definitely better — by far.

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This is the real secret of life — to be completely engaged with what you are doing in the here and now. And instead of calling it work, realize it is play.

Alan Watts