As I was getting dressed to head to the office today, I had a big decision to make – do I wear my pink Limitless t-shirt, my black Limitless t-shirt, my black KW Labs t-shirt, or my black Free Hugs t-shirt? Tough, right? My “work uniform” these days (jeans, Allbirds, and t-shirt, hoodie – optional) looks completely different than it did 10 years ago. I always think it’s funny when people say to others, “Oh, man, he/she has changed so much. They used to be so <fill in the blank.>” I say, “Hell, yes!” Change is a good thing! Could you imagine being the same person you were when you were 21? I can’t.
Over the years, I’ve traded the three piece suit (complete with pocket square) for jeans and a t-shirt, the Breitling for a Garmin, and the Porsche for an F-150. It was really an awakening to allow who I was on the inside to come through. As I focused on my personal and spiritual growth, my outsides started to match my insides. I’m a casual guy and over time, I didn’t need to armor up and suit up to go out into the world, I could just do me.
It was a slow evolution. When I was selling real estate, I was dressed to the nines every day to meet clients and take businesses meetings. Clothes tell a story and I had a certain story and persona I wanted to project in my early days of entrepreneurship. A few years later, I lost the tie but kept the blazer (and the pocket square!), a year after that, I lost the jacket, but kept the slacks, and then the slacks gave way to jeans and a button-up shirt, then I replaced the tailored shirt with a t-shirt. Slowly, slowly, and then suddenly, on the outside, I had morphed into who you see showing up today. No suit. No armor. Just me.
The external is just a really easy way to see what was happening on the inside. That external image was just a manifestation of the metamorphosis that I was going through. Was I just faking it until I made it? Not really. First, I really hate that phrase. I wasn’t faking anything. I was doing what I thought best at the time with the information I had learned and experiences that I had lived up to that point. Was I projecting who I wanted to be or wanted to be seen as? Sure. But how else do you test out what works for you and what doesn’t? How else do you really figure out who you are and who you want to be if you don’t give it a try?
A really clear example of this was my previous iteration of Adam Hergenrother Training. We called that company MindSpark and we produced these great mindset videos each week. Well, the best part of the videos were the blooper reel at the end. I was watching these again recently and it hit me that those blooper reels are the real me; that’s who I am today. The video content was solid, but not exactly how I would have presented it today! For one, I would definitely not be wearing a jacket. But at the time, I was simply delivering it in a way that I thought I needed to in order to get my message heard. Fast forward a few years and it turns out, I could impact more lives by just being me!
Did I really change or evolve? Or did I just allow who I was all along at the core to finally shine through? I think it’s a combination of both. Growth and evolution of the self is often just letting go of all the bullshit – the clothes, the material possessions, the ego, the identity, and allowing the real you to come out. And what’s really interesting is that when I surrendered to this idea of letting go and focusing on giving more than I got and showing up to serve the moment, that’s when my success really took off.
But’s that’s how it works, isn’t it? When you’re just getting started in business or in a new relationship or working on a new project, you can sometimes be trying just a little bit too hard and end up forcing it. No judgement there! We’ve all done it. And usually the intentions behind it are really good – trying to help someone else on your team, or getting that girl you like to notice you, or trying to earn enough money to take your family on an extended vacation.
Whatever the motivation, I can tell you from experience, success feels so much better once you’ve relaxed into it. I’m not telling you to stop grinding and hustling, I’m just saying do it from a different part of you, a more true and authentic part, without putting any attachments on the outcome. People can feel the energy when you are trying to be someone you’re not. They will run away from you! It’s just exhausting to use your energy to be someone you’re not. Relax, let go, settle into yourself and let that energy out. There is a lightness that you feel when you no longer need to uphold that image. You will be amazed at who and what you attract into your life. Creativity and expression are abundant! And perhaps more than anything, you are going to have so much more fun and experience more joy along the way when you give yourself permission to just be you!
Have you experienced a metamorphosis or transformation in your life? What happened? How did your life change? Who did you become?