Unbranded

Define your brand before other brands define you

My smart raincoat — repels the rain but lets what is most important.

This I wrote in early 2015, not long after I started Sunday Morning Joe. It’s one of the posts that helped to carry my ideas forward and the concept shared is even more applicable to my life today than it was then. Thank you for reading.


Have you ever received a present which you were looking forward to using but the weather wasn’t cooperating? For Christmas, my wife and daughter gave to me a new raincoat. It will be great on those rainy days next to the river coaching young athletes.

Coming out of a long period of freezing temperatures, today is the first sunny and warm Sunday of 2015 here in Oklahoma City — not so useful for my new raincoat but ideal for the year’s first bike ride, which is where I’m headed this morning.

Image courtesy of Unsplash

Back on Christmas Day, as I slid my arms into the sleeves, I realized that this was the first raincoat I’ve had in over 25 years that wasn’t branded with the Olympic Rings, the letters, “USA” or the USA Canoe/Kayak logo. 
 
And it felt good. Really good.
 
It’s not to say that I don’t care about my association with these entities or ideals. You don’t have to look far to see how I choose my Olympic affiliations. I choose them often, and the Olympic values are embedded in most everything I do. 
 
But our lives are a series of tipping points. Whether it’s the Olympics, your organization, your sport, or your band — is that association going to define to you, or are you going to define the association?
 
Owning your identity is critical to this equation.
 
Our ability to serve, support and grow the entities and movements that we care about directly aligns with the quality of investment that we make in ourselves.
 
Today more than ever, I openly share my processes, challenges and vulnerabilities. It’s a way of being more self-reflective, honest with myself and accountable for the improvements that I want to make. This is new territory, and while it’s not so easy stepping out on the ledge, the idea that in some way it might serve others — serve you — fuels more small steps every day.
 
And perhaps that’s why wearing the new raincoat feels so good. It’s a fresh outlook on approaching challenging elements connected to a healthy mindset towards developing new skills, ideas and perspectives.
 
It’s the process of choosing yourself.

With gratitude,

Joe


I teach my clients the advanced techniques necessary to reveal talents which have been set to idle due to external and internal distractions.

I, then, transfer my Olympic Gold Medal performance strategies that streamline decision making and actions when engaged in complicated life currents with an aim towards the freedom of playing your own game.