Short Stories

I Am What I Am

I am what I am and that’s all that I am.

Popeye the Sailor

Cartoon Character

I mentioned in one of my earlier Crumbs that I was not a big fan of Popeye. Hard to understand a word he said, he was obsessed with Olive Oyl (who two-timed him with Bluto), and he loved spinach. 

Now that I am older, I see him differently. We are all a little hard to understand sometimes, relationships can be complicated, and now I love spinach, too! 

What I like most about him is that he was always himself. Always authentic. 

That is not an easy thing to do.  

In order to get along, we trim off some of our personality and authenticity. A fair amount of “holding back the real you” is necessary sometimes – It keeps us from saying everything that comes to mind. The challenge comes when we conform so much that we lose the essence of our individuality, we lose the.. 

“I am what I am, and that’s all that I am.” 

A few years ago, I came up with an exercise and do it as a workshop for salespeopleHey, we have personalities too! It has also been effective for 100’s of others outside of sales, that I have taken through some version of the exercise. It is the “I Am” exercise. 

The Set-Up 

Imagine a Hollywood actor was going to portray you in a movie. You would want the best you possible to be portrayed, right? What qualities and attributes would you want conveyed on the big screen? How would your character respond to opportunities and challenges? What would be the strengths, values and character? How would they live their life? 

As you sat down with the actor to give them direction, it would be some version of the ideal you. The version of you that would closest resemble what you really want to be. I am not saying you should try to be “fake”, perfect or flawless, but a portrayal that would capture the essence of you. 

As we begin the exercise tomorrow, some of the characteristics you list are already imbedded deep within you. Others are attributes that you will have to develop or allow them to re-emerge. This is an opportunity usually reserved for January 1st resolutions. A chance for you to define, refine and align the real you. The one that boldly declares to the world… 

I Am What I Am! 

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Brandon L Clay

Storyteller Strategist Coach

I am a storyteller and have been using simple stories to help people see bigger possibilities for their lives. They are based on my real life experiences and I believe they will be relevant for your life, too.

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