Daily Business Cards

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I’ve been working on a new conceptual project. It’s entirely impractical, but such fun to think about.

Instead of relying on a single business or contact card to share our pertinent info, updated every once in a while as required, what if we lived in a world where our cards were updated daily, as a nod to the many different roles we take on from day to day?

Starting this week, I created a new whimsical business card each day. I think I’ll keep at it a while longer and see where it takes me.

If you created a business or contact card for yourself based on what you’ve been up to today, what would your title be?

 

Naomi Hattaway, What Does It Feel Like To Be You?

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This is the third in my series of interviews in which I ask people, “What does it feel like to be you?”

Naomi Hattaway has lived and traveled across the world and throughout the United States. Her first international move was from the United States to India with her husband and three young children. From there she and her family relocated to Singapore before returning to United States where she has lived in four different states since her return.

Through it all, Naomi has been a community-building entrepreneur. She founded and ran a Facebook group for people experiencing international relocations, which grew to 15,000 members. Upon her return to the United States, she obtained her real estate license and opened an agency dedicated to helping families move from one home to the next, wherever in the world that might be. She also writes articles about her relocation experiences and gives talks and workshops.

About a year ago, after many years of traveling and entrepreneurship, she did two things she thought she might never do – she returned to her hometown in Nebraska, and she became an employee for the first time in more than two decades.

Knowing how wonderfully open Naomi is about her life experiences, I couldn’t wait to ask what it feels like to be her in this moment of transitions.

“When we moved back to Omaha,” she said, “which is where I was born and raised, I wrote a blog post about my home ownership journey because in my late teen years as a single mom I had a Habitat for Humanity house and I wrote in this article about how the full circle happened and how having the chance at home ownership when in was eighteen really set my family up for success.”

“The CEO of Habitat for Humanity of Omaha saw my article because she was also at Habitat Omaha twenty years ago when I had my house.”

After meeting with the CEO, Naomi was hired as Program Director.

“I felt honoured and valued when she asked me,” she said, “and it almost flipped when I actually started because I felt so overwhelmed and not capable and . . . impostor complex, oh my goodness, that came roaring out of left field.”

“I was homeschooled . . . and it was before it was legal in the state of Nebraska, so I didn’t get a diploma and I didn’t graduate and I didn’t get a GED until I was 30 . . . I’ve always carried around with me a ‘you don’t know enough’ complex and so I’m always an avid learner, avid reader. Podcasts, books, I’m constantly intaking, I think, to contrast the fact that I was never told by an institution that I had learned enough to go to the next step. And it sounds so silly to say out loud, but I think there was something with that when the job offer came. It was a respectable position, a respectable organization and I had never had anyone say, ‘I think you have enough value that we would like to ask you to join us’”.

I asked if transitioning from entrepreneur to employee felt risky to Naomi. It did. It still does.

“When you’re an entrepreneur and running your own show, you get to sidestep stuff all the time. You get to choose what’s comfortable. . . I liked to think that I took risks as an entrepreneur and as a business owner, but I don’t think I was. I was only taking risks in what I knew I could bounce back from or be successful at. This is making me see the other side of what happens if I don’t risk or what happens if I don’t show up in the workplace with integrity and as my authentic self.”

“So my risk is nine to five, in the Midwest, in Omaha Nebraska. Being here in my space right now is very challenging. To be back where I grew up, to be back in a place where I wanted to leave and never come back to . . . It’s almost like fitting myself into a box and figuring out how to still be myself is the challenge right now.”

At the end of our chat, I asked Naomi how she would describe herself in this moment. This is what she told me:

“I think that I would have you describe me as . . . a constant seeker of more information because I believe that when we know better we do better. I am an avid gardener, allergic to anything that relates to the gym, and massively in love with the things we can do that have impact on our communities.”

Looking back on our conversation, I am in awe of Naomi’s openness to new experiences and opportunities. She brings her whole self to each new adventure by embracing the events that brought her to this moment. What if we all did this? What if we valued the parts of our personal histories that made us who we are? What if we shared them with others? What if we recognized them as unlimited sources of wisdom and courage?

When I started writing this post, I thought it was going to be about learning how to manage new and unexpected challenges, but now I see that it’s about realizing you are already up to the challenge.

How about you? What challenges are you facing head on right now? Share your thoughts with Naomi and me in the comments.

Learn more about Naomi: www.naomihattaway.com | Instagram @naomihattaway and @therelocationexpert

 

Seeing yourself in this moment

Year’s ago, I read a study on workplace problem solving. The general idea was that people who were asked to identify many different parts of themselves — the conscientious worker part, the dedicated partner part, the caring nurturer part, the creative part, the silly part, etc. — prior to being presented with a problem were better at solving it than people who were asked only about their role at work.

I think about this idea all the time. That when we are able see ourselves in all our multi-dimensional brilliance, we are better equipped to handle whatever the world throws at us, we have more of our tools at our disposal. It’s what I was thinking about when I created this page, which is dedicated to capturing a vivid image of yourself right now so that you can carry it with you into your day and the adventures that await you.