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Personal Rebranding for 2023


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As I look back at resolutions past, I see a disheartening pattern of vows and good habits tossed aside before Valentine's Day, along with blank journals, gym membership cards, rattling bottles of supplements and dusty self-help books. But this year will not be like previous attempts to improve my life. Rather than another shot at overhauling the content of my character and habits, I will be rebranding. I'm still kicking around a couple of catchphrases, logos and taglines, but it's coming along. Still pre-grounding those.

What's pre-grounding, you ask? It's the term for the activity before you start to lay the groundwork for the foundation of the first steps of a task that seems like a lot. This may include things that seem unrelated to said task, like scrolling online, settling in for a couple episodes of The Witcher, or what have you. All part of the process. You might still be referring to it by the somewhat outdated and pejorative word, "procrastinating." Very 2022.

How we phrase and frame things matters far more than what we're actually doing. And rebranding your life and habits is far more effective than changing them. Like abandoning a flailing acting career to shill for a cosmetics line, it's a power move.

For example, in 2023, I'm no longer bingeing anything. It's gluttonous and out of control. Instead of binge-watching, I take part in retreats where I set aside the distractions of daily life to focus and reflect on, say, 34 straight episodes of The Witcher. When I return from my Witcher retreat, dull-eyed and unwashed, I will be prepared to share the wisdom I've gained with others, apply the weekend's lessons to my reality of less-hot but thankfully less violent people.

Likewise, rather than bingeing, I will go on frozen Margarita cleanses. In fact, lemme get a refill from the blender here. The salt is just starting to do its thing and I feel very light and clear.

I won't be randomly eating like some clod who just consumes food without a carefully plotted and marketed set of rules, the description of which makes other people feel like bears rummaging at a dump. No, when you see me hunkered down over an Italian sub sandwich that partially obscures my face and torso, know that I am core-cycling Euro carbs, power-lactos (cheese) and counter proteins (deli meats). Cycling the crusty bread, mortadella, salami and provolone (a key power-lacto!) with a little oil and vinegar toward what I'm fairly certain is my core area, where they will settle and thrive. A sandwich, some caramel corn — whatever it is, I'm core-cycling it.

But what about my workouts? After years of trying to transform my body into a high-performance machine, I realized I'm already retro-fit. Is that some back-to-basics training regime with leather medicine balls? No, retro-fitness is about getting your body into the performance level of a dusty old register at an old-timey country store; everything still works but it hasn't been moved since the last Great War. Please do not touch it.

Ever since I started glassing, I don't worry about screen time. Glassing is like earthing but instead of going outside barefoot to connect with the living energy of the planet, you're connecting to the outside world through glass surfaces like a television, or the glowing screen of a tablet or phone clutched over the covers in the dead of night, maybe with the sound turned way down because the apartment walls are really thin and your neighbor says the shrieking in The Witcher freaked him the hell out at 3 a.m.

Listen, I used to beat myself up about not saving money, too. But pivoting to conscious penury has changed my life. Unless the cost of living magically drops, I'm free of the burden of planning things like vacations (so stressful!), retirement or meals that aren't instant noodles and counter-protein bars (hot dogs). Now that scraping by is the plan, I'm excited and daydreaming about what kind of telemarketing I might be doing from my deathbed.

Now that I've rebranded, professional goals are at last within reach. I took a hard look at my past reviews and am proud to say I'm no longer spending company time gossiping or engaging in "toxic" criticism of my colleagues. The new me is open source. That is, I freely share information about who Sean is screwing and how we can all (and by "all," I think we all know I mean Chelsea) better represent our team by not dressing like some skank on a post-break-up cruise. I'm planning a PowerPoint on that last one but it's still in the pre-grounding phase.

. Reach her at (707) 442-1400, extension 320, or jennifer@northcoastjournal.com. Follow her on Instagram @JFumikoCahill and on Mastodon @jenniferfumikocahill.



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