When Perception is Reality

Have you ever been at home minding your own business when suddenly you get a text that your friend is in your neighborhood? They want to drop by and say hello, pet the dog and have a cocktail with you. After all, it’s been SO long,they want to catch up. You don’t mind, right?

Of course not — you think begrudgingly.

A small sense of panic sets in. There’s at least 3 loads of laundry that haven’t been done yet, dirty dishes in the sink, and your shelves haven’t been dusted since you had your family over for Christmas. You literally have 10 minutes, and your house is not in it’s best shape.

What’s the big deal? Why do we even care?

We care because we want people to think of us well. We don’t want them to think dirty sink and undone laundry — we want them to think polished and put together. On top of it. Best in their field. The kind of person who always has a spotless house even when guests aren’t on their way over.

Have you ever heard the phrase, “perception is reality?”

It means that how people perceive is usually what they believe based on what they see, think, and feel.

To shape perception, we must become the authors of our own narrative. We must control our own assets — digital or physical — to ensure that we rise into the positions we deserve to be. To get ahead, you’ve got to rise above.

To rise above, ask yourself these questions:

  • Is the information relevant on my website? Does it actually represent the image I want to convey?

  • Do I even have a website? Is it time to get one?

  • How does my LinkedIn summary read? Is it in line with the objectives I have for my career?

  • Am I using Instagram to its full capacity? Is the content I am producing providing real value to my audience?

If you’re not sure on the answers to some of these questions, it’s time to take a harder look. Why wait until your friend is on her way over? Why wait until you in are the middle of a job search to assess these things? Unlike our homes, people have access to our content at any given time — which means they are constantly evaluating whether we are credible, qualified, or someone they should pay attention to.

There’s no getting around it — working (and succeeding) in a digital age has prompted a new set of responsibilities. Knowing that anyone, at any given time, has access to a network of information on us — how are you choosing to optimize what they see? It could be the difference between closing the deal or not closing the deal. To get ahead, we’ve got to rise above.

The moment is NOW. Your friend called, she’s on her way over.

Schedule a free 20-minute personal branding strategy consultation below. Let’s #makemoves together.


Anna Vatuone