How to Be Brilliant Inside and Out

Something I notice a lot these days is how often what people show on the outside doesn’t match what’s going on in the inside.

I see people I know are absolute geniuses at what they do, but the way they dress and present themselves on the outside doesn’t even begin to convey the brilliance inside.  On the other hand I see people who really look the part – but it’s not who they really are. They’re playing the part of who they think people want them to be.

It’s only when inside and outside are in alignment that you become irresistibly attractive to the people you really desire to be working with.

Something’s not quite right

When I say people aren’t presenting themselves well from the outside, I don’t necessarily mean they’re going around like complete scruff-bags (though it has to be said, a surprising number of one-person business-owners do!) It’s more that they aren’t wearing the style that suits them best, or the colours that work best with their skin type.

Let me give you an example from my own life. For quite a few years, I’ve stuck to dark blue jacket and jeans, with a plain blue shirt. Then, late last year, I got it into my head that other people looked much cooler than me, in their more adventurous shirts and more casual style. So I started changing my wardrobe, buying more exciting shirts etc.  It all came to a head when I met Jackie Perkins, director of House of Colour, for lunch one day. I was on my way to a video interview, for the Journey of Possibilities podcast, and I mentioned that to Jackie. She was very diplomatic – just raised an eyebrow as she surveyed my new purple and black patterned shirt, and said: “Keep the jacket on!”

That was when I decided I’d better get my colours done. It turns out that my best palette is spring, and my style is natural classic. I was wearing winter colours and going for a much more dramatic style that just didn’t suit me and my being. Knowing that, I can now be suitably adventurous in the colours I choose, and still know they are going to suit my skin colour, eyes, hair etc, and the way I wear them will suit my overall being. Those who know me may have noticed that my jackets lately have been more vibrant, and the rather more in-your-face shirts have disappeared.

What about the inside?

So that’s the outside, what about the inside. In exactly the same way that someone can immediately notice (albeit not consciously) when your clothing looks just right on you, they also pick up on the confidence that comes from a deep understanding of your inner genius.  When you really know who you are, and more importantly what you can do for the world, you have a clarity and a confidence about how you present what you do.  Your brilliance shines through, and people know that this is a person who’s going places.

When you lack that clarity, it can be very easy to just settle back into the role you think other people want from you. And while it’s easy, it doesn’t bring you any ease. Because you know you’re just playing a part, and you’re hiding the real you, the you that can really make a difference out there. When you’re playing a part for other people, you get yourself all twisted out of shape, and that robs you of your full potency.

And the worst of it is, other people pick up on that incongruency. Just like with your dress on the outside, they probably can’t put their finger on what’s not quite right. But they sense they are dealing with someone being a little bit fake on the inside, and that puts them off working with you.

Inside and outside in alignment

Looking great on the outside only takes you so far. And an inner clarity about how you can make the most difference in the world won’t even see the light of day if it’s not well presented. Get the two of them working in harmony, though, and that’s when the magic happens.

When you have that inner confidence that comes from knowing exactly who you are, and what you’re here to do, and you also show up with a way of dressing that is congruent with your innate being, that’s when things really start to click. When the inside is in harmony with your genius, and the outside is in harmony with your body, those two harmonies interact in such a way that they create a resonance, a power greater than either of them can create alone.

That’s when you’re truly brilliant, inside and out.

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Photo by Arnaud Mesureur on Unsplash

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About The Author

Andrew Horder

Founder of Joyful Genius Coaching, Andrew has been working with business owners for many years, helping them find and maintain their unique focus - those activities and opportunities that they love, and will produce their success, what Andrew calls your Joyful Genius! Andrew's first book, The A to Z of Loving Work is available from Amazon

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