I promise this photo is relevant to this post.

Last week, during a mini mastermind session with my friend Christa, I was sharing about a challenge I was dealing with. While I was describing it, I added, “I’m casual, but I’m not lax.” Christa stopped me and said, “Oooh, that’s such an important distinction to make!” And we moved on with the discussion.

After the call, I got to thinking about the distinction and what other lines I can draw about myself and my work style.

I remembered the last time I did some marketing work for a client, they opted to use 99designs for their logo. 99designs allows you to hold a contest for graphic designers to create and iterate on a logo and other design elements for you. It’s cheaper than going with an agency and more professional than using Fiverr. In building the contest, you have to answer questions about your brand and your tastes by selecting existing logos you like, colors you’d like the designers to explore, and, finally, styles you feel match your brand’s identity.

The way 99designs presents the style question is through a series of sliders that have opposing styles on each end. E.g., classic to modern and mature to youthful, and you place where your brand lands on the spectrum:

I think this is a really clever way to think about identity and personality, understanding that most things aren’t binary. (I’m also reminded of an interview with Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen about their 90s Nickelodeon show Two of a Kind. One was portrayed as a tomboy while the other was a girly girl, and they shared that it had annoyed them because they’re each both/neither. But I digress.)

But “casual” and “lax” aren’t opposites, which makes this exercise a little trickier. One other distinction between similar adjectives that comes to mind is clean vs. tidy. What are some others? Chatty vs. longwinded? Being detail-oriented vs. a perfectionist? Let me know of what else you think of and where you land on the spectrum!

Click to read about another insight from these sessions with Christa.

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