It’s a word I say every day. More and more, every day. I might be up to hundreds of times a day, saying, or thinking that single word.
It continues to deepen in meaning for me.
When I log in to PayPal, the little spinning wheel appears and it says, “Authenticating your information…”, and I think to myself, It’s making sure I’m real. It’s making sure that I am who I say I am. Verifying, and then endorsing by granting access to my PayPal account.
We need more of this in life, not just in PayPal.
It was over two years ago when I heard Lara Casey speak on branding at Stationery Academy. She said something along the lines of, powerful brands have to be authentic.
Something must have stumped me, because I found myself thinking, What is authentic, anyway? What is real? Velveteen Rabbit real–what is that, and how do you get there?
Oh, friends, what a journey it has been. A journey through purpose, and piles of books, and tons of writing, and an over abundance of deep thoughts. It’s been process and analyzing and prayer. It’s been tears and pain points.
It’s been SO. INCREDIBLY. WORTH IT.
After Stationery Academy that year, I didn’t leave thinking I needed a “rebrand”. There was nothing wrong with my logo or wordmark. I left feeling like I needed a DE-BRAND. Less of a logo, more of a voice.
Debranding. That’s probably a topic for a much longer post. But think about it for a moment. Debrand. Step out from behind the logo. Authenticate. Be who you really are.
Over the past two years, I’ve documented as much of my research on authenticating as I possibly can, and I’ve tried to summarize these concepts and findings into 12 principles that are the heart of the Authenticate process. I’ve been hesitant to document them on the blog, but for reasons that would take more time to list than I have today, I’m just going to tell you that I’m going to share them with you over the next couple of weeks.
I’m going to put it out there. Bare bones and all.
I feel like I’m living one giant vulnerability experiment.