brandmean growingLast year is behind you and before you is a brand new year – a new chance to do something different.

It’s time to refresh yourself.

Time to go beyond simply updating a bio or online profile. This is a great time to take inventory (check your soil) and plant new seeds (create new ways to flourish) in 2013. Remember, the little white lies you tell yourself have a way off accumulating and coming back on your reputation with a vengeance.

The Merriam Webster dictionary defines refresh as: to restore, to update or renew. As you consider refreshing the way others perceive you, know that the goal of refreshing is to take what you have and improve upon it. Dig down deep, keep your eyes wide open and work on whatever you find.

Dig Deeper

Gather up the courage to dig deeper in 2013 and you will reap what you sow.  By deeper I mean focusing your attentions on matters that are not superficial, yet will refresh your appearance on paper, online and offline. By deeper I mean, taking personal inventory and being courageous enough to look at what you uncover about yourself as a person, as a professional or as an organization. For a true refreshing to take place you have to be willing to overcome the negative patterns, habits and behaviors that don’t match up with the life you want to live or lifestyle you want to reflect or the ethos (the distinguishing character, sentiment, moral nature, or guiding beliefs of a person, group, or institution) you want to be known for or linked to.

If you are willing to look at what you do well and what needs your attention, spend time thinking about how you can make 2013 better, and then make necessary changes in order to keep growing personally and professionally, your outcome (harvest) will be greater than you expected.

Your reputation will improve.

People will begin to see you in a different light.

 The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., who would have turned 84 this year once said:

“The time is always right to do what is right.”

There is never a wrong time to make corrections or change direction. Refreshing your reputation will mean something different to every person or organization. Still, as you engage in the process of refreshing yourself you will begin to view things differently or consider options that never came up before.

This brings to mind another quote Dr. King also said:

“We are not makers of history. We are made by history.”

You craft your personal and professional history, and in a way, the Web is there to make sure you never forget it. There’s no going back. You can’t turn back the hands of time to change what you did or didn’t do last year. That history will remain as it is. But, you can decide that you will be aware of your thoughts, patterns, behaviors and actions in 2013. What you have is this moment and the next and the next to do something new. To do something that will enhance or improve your reputation going forward. You have now!

Be present in the moment, work to mend relationships or create new connections this year so that you remain true to your goals. As you look to refresh your reputation online and in the minds of others offline, you’ll come face to face with the fact that improving your reputation depends on how you carry yourself and how you present yourself to the World Wide Web is only a part of it. Let’s dig deeper this year and leave the lives we touch and this businesses we connect with better along the way.

Do you believe improving your reputation all begins and ends with you?

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