Claiming Your Entrepreneurial Identity


Article: Shana Yao 

Entrepreneur, claiming your truth, positioning, personal branding

“The privilege of a lifetime is being who you are.” Since day one, this quote from Joseph Campbell has been written on my wall. It has such truth and wisdom, and at the time I discovered it, my own personal journey towards self discovery had already begun, And it was at that time that I decided that I was going to set out to find just what about me was this privilege he spoke about.

The privilege of a life time is being who you are.
— Joseph Campbell

At that time, my parents had died years before, I had lost my once stellar career as a high level shopping center marketing director for over 25 years due to the economic decline, and knowing what was special about me was still a hidden secret just waiting to be discovered.

But what I have come to realize, is that each one of us, no matter if you are born with an artistic talent or a genius brain - that we each have our own “magic” that lives inside of your soul, and when you discover it, it becomes your job in life to realize it, perfect it, and honor it so that it becomes your signature style. 

That is what I call your personal brand. While you may think that is an old school term, the reality is, your personal brand is what people say about you after you have left the room - whether you realize it or not. It’s the impression you make just be being you, and as a business owner, it’s impossible to hide. 

Your personal brand is the magic that lives inside of your soul, and it becomes your real job in life to realize it, perfect it, and honor it so that it becomes your signature style.

In fact, it’s how you get your magic out to your clients - how you position your marketing strategy - that will attract the clients you are meant to serve, and give you the confidence and focus to succeed at your highest level.

I know this because I lived it. It was just a few years ago when I started my business. I felt like a woman on a mission - to help others at the deep level that I knew was possible. With 28 years of business and marketing experience, I was confident in my knowledge about business, and born with a heart that just wanted to help people as the main focus of my life.

Yet all of my life, even before my business, I think my soul was starving for something deeper. To stop being finding excuses to be so hard on myself.  To stop beating myself up in my head for not achieving what I “thought” I should have accomplished. Despite the awards for innovating marketing, despite achieving high level positions like being Marketing Director of Rodeo Drive - working hand in hand with the editors at Vogue Magazine, top fashion bloggers, international brands, and gaining the attention of the media around the globe… the accolades, the confirmation of my intelligent mind, I still felt a little empty, insecure, and always like I didn’t quite fit wherever I went.

But what I really discovered was that all those years I was trying to fit my genius into a box. And geniuses don’t fit in boxes. I had just spent so many years of my life, trying to squeeze myself into a broken system - a system that I don’t belong or fit in.

And what I found out, was that I didn’t need a box or system - I needed to actually DESIGN and CREATE my own.

And wallah - so Total Genius was born. I went on to create my business changing program - Own Your Expertise - and the well known Master Your Money Code (book coming soon!) which changed people's perspective on business, their potential, and their overall positioning identity, and most recently launched The 5 Minute Marketing Journal - because marketing is easy, when you make it a part of you. 

Today, what I realized from diving deep into my own positioning quintessence, is that once elusive privilege Joseph Campbell spoke about in that quote. I discovered my own "secret sauce", the thing that makes me come alive, and that what it and I am at the core, is the catalyst to empower others to discover their privilege. 

It sounds so grand, but what it is at the root of it all, is an overall soul purpose, to use my life experience in one heart-felt mission to lead others to the self empowerment that they seek and bring that magic out of them so they can lead the people they serve to their success and healing.

Each one of us in born with a purpose, and that is the privilege you seek. Some people never discover it, but if you are dedicated to finding it, committed to finding the truth inside of you, and loving enough to want to use it to help others, I guarantee you a life filled with no regrets, only hard fought challenges, deep rooted fulfillment, and everlasting happiness.

So my dear genius friend, hold your head high, flaunt your personal style. Be proud of the person you are - and I promise, if you do the work - create a plan that allows you to build on and grow - you will finally discover that part of you that has been waiting to come out. You’ll find a system that works - because you created from your own genius mind.

Keep going my beautiful friend. Look for the answers - first inside of you, and then find out how to get more of that out.

I believe in you.

Shana Lynn Yao, CEO * Your Marketing Mastermind

Shana Yao is CEO and Your Marketing Mastermind® of TOTAL GENIUS™, She is the Editor and Chief of The Business Luminary Magazine, and works with high achieving clients to empower them to own their expertise so they can make a bigger impact in the world, with a signature business that reflects their personal style.

Driven by purpose, her mission is to build Luminary Leaders of tomorrow to light up the world with change and innovation. Her focus around the areas of holistic health, personal style, and mental clarity, are based on the belief that true success is found in becoming the person you are meant to be in life and using that to empower your business. For it's the combination of your greatest strengths, talents, and life experience that fulfills your life and creates true, everlasting success. 

She is an award-winning Business & Personal Success Strategist with over 28 years of experience managing multimillion dollar retail and shopping center locations, including the famed Rodeo Drive. 

Join her and other Luminary Leaders, lighting the world with their holistic and powerful businesses at the The Business Luminaries.