“Branding is for products. Also, for cattle. People-even artists- aren’t products. You may make things, but you aren’t a thing. Resist the temptation to climb into a perfectly-crafted brand identity. Instead, practice claiming your whole self- your wild, weird, ever-changing, ever-learning, mistake-making, beautiful/ awful whole self, something so much more powerful and honest than a brand.”- Shauna Neiquist
Recently I can’t escape from the word “Authenticity”.
It’s like every blog, Instagram post, book, and talk show is talking about Authenticity. I've loved it. It’s a conversation that has been needing to be had for a long time! In many ways Authenticity signals a huge paradigm shift in our culture. Authenticity is definitely a step in the right direction!
HOWEVER, I’ve had this little thing in the back of mind that has rolled around like a pebble in my shoe for the last 6 months. This idea that...
We live in a society that wants us to fit into nice, neat categories. Categories make life simpler for controlling people. Set up a category, claim your adherents, throw stones at the other categories! Just look at the Mummy wars that rage online … Breast vs Bottle fed, Organic vs leftover Maccas chips on the floor of the mini-van! Or, more broadly, Normal vs Weird, Left vs Right, Conservative vs Progressive, Male vs Female.
Life is so much “simpler” when you can manufacture an identity that is made up of a set of dogmatic ideas. Same vs Different. Us vs Them. As a society, we don’t know how (or whether) to deal with people until we’ve got them pegged into their categories. Once we do though, we very quickly (and permanently) write them off or accept them into the fold.
This is not how life is meant to be!
In our family, we’ve tried not to allow ourselves to be defined by these polarising...