The Un-Meme That Made My Head Explode (Thank you, IttyBiz)

Sep 30

There was this big....  KaBoom!Today, before I even made coffee, Ms.Naomi Dunford of IttyBiz fame sent out an innocent looking link on Twitter.

I clicked on it.

Then my head exploded.

Naomi calls the post her un-Meme, and she challenged me (and you, and everyone else) to answer a series of deceptively quick questions, questions that amount to “What do you do for a living?”

It starts like this:

“What’s your game? What do you do?”

I could tell you I teach people to blah blah blah, or that I help  so-and-so do such and such. I could also say that I’m in transition, and still feeling my way around this new project I call The Circus.

Any of those replies would probably get me brownie points from all the entrepreneurial biggification coach people out there, and the second would probably also get me offers of introductory coaching sessions with some of you.

But what my actual game is? Yeah.

I breathe. I feel. I stress. I touch the divine.

Then I pour all of that out onto paper, pixels, words and images. I  send it out into the world, where it, in turn, can breathe, and feel, and touch the divine in others.

Ok, seriously? That sounds way too woo-woo for me, and doesn’t get at the heart of Naomi’s question anyway.

So I’m going to try it again.

Take 2: “What’s your game? What do you do?”

I shift people’s worlds.

I change their perspective.  Help them to see (and feel) things differently.  And give them permission to be who they are. This thread runs through everything I do, and everything (important) that I’ve done.

It could turn out to be a coaching thing (though I’m allergic to that word and I’m not entirely sure how it would work)  No, I don’t have a page for it up, but if this sounds like your thing, just ask and I’ll work something out for you.

I paint emotion and souls.

Oops. I don’t have a sales page for that, either, but yes, I take commissions. Examples? Ok, sure. Just Some Art – It’s Almost Safe For Work I’ve worked with all kinds of budgets, from $25 – $900.  So if this sounds like it interests you, again, just ask .  We’ll talk. Really.

I write. A lot.

I write so much that this is usually my answer to “what do you do”, even though I earn less at it than many of the other things I do.

But if you’d like something written, or rewritten, or nudged a little bit to make it more comfy? Yeah. You can totally talk to me about that. I spent a year blogging for a brain fitness company.  I do awesome reviews.  I love playing P.T. Barnum with copy. Need something put into words?  Let me at it. (but you’ll have to ask because you already KNOW I don’t have a page, right?)

I talk a lot about how to make the brain work better.

I’ve written about it, created a membership course on the topic, gotten paid for writing even more about it, and… yeah. It’s sorta my thing.  Want some info on the topic? Ask. I’ve probably got an article on it saved around here somewhere.  If this is your thing, let’s talk. .  I have some potential product stuff you might be interested in.

I create environments.

Mostly on the web, in words, in images, in web page designs and tweaks.  This isn’t something I do often, because it’s very time consuming. But I am very, very good at it.

This, too, could be a coaching/consulting gig, if I weren’t allergic to those terms. Doing it as a consultant, offering reviews and input and tweaks to existing designs? That would make it more manageable. Less time consuming. So if you’d like some input on your website or product or whatever…  and how you can better tweak it to reflect your core message? Drop me a line. Tell me about it. We’ll work something affordable out.

The whole “creating environments” thing?

It’s part of why I don’t like to reduce what I do to simple labels. Because the minute you think of me as that label, I lose control of the environment I’m spinning, and I loose the chance to shift your world. It’s a bummer.

Ok, back to the questions.

Why do you do it? Do you love it, or do you just have one of those creepy knacks?

I love the act of creation, of shaping, of tuning; I love the process, which is probably why it’s so time consuming.  I like spending time there.

And yeah,  sometimes I have an incredibly creepy knack for what I do, especially when I do the soul painting, world shifting thing. Makes my hair stand on end, from time to time.

Who are your customers? What kind of people would need or want what you offer?

To date, they’ve been mostly highly passionate folks, with strong creative streaks complimentary to mine.  When they came to me, they needed a bit of a push, just a little shove  (sometimes a big shove) in this direction or that, to get unstuck, to get out of fear, to get past a perceived limitation.

They’re people who want to fly.
I like those kinds of people.

What’s your marketing USP? Why should I buy from you instead of the other losers?

What’s my unique sales position? Um…

I’m crazier than the other guy.
I will grok your crazy better, too.

And you won’t find much more uniqueness than you do here.  Which will inspire you to be more unique, too.

(And did I mention the crazy thing?)

What’s next for you? What’s the big plan?

Honestly, I’m in transition, so I’ve rewritten The Big Plan about 20 times this quarter.  The current incarnation includes:

  • Community Building.  It’s like a world, but with people in it.
  • Meditation Kits and info and stuff that’s Fun, plus Inappropriate Capitalization.
  • A Book! A very very fun book about maps and fears and things we’re not doing any more.
  • Sideshow Circus Freaks. There are definitely Sideshow Circus Freaks in the future. The near future. Because we can never have enough Circus Freaks in our worlds.

So. There you go.

I’m somehow sure this didn’t exactly answer Naomi’s question, but it’s as close as you’re going to get today.

Now I’m going to go make that coffee I missed out on this morning, and use it to glue the bits of my brain back together. I’m also challenging you to participate in Naomi’s Un-Meme, so you can share in the experience of having your head explode, too.

You can find the details here:
IttyBiz: What do YOU do? The Un-Meme Redux

I’m not responsible for any stray kaboomage, though.

Ok. Time for comments!

Have any thoughts? Insights? Inspirations?
DIY methods for reassembling brains?
Share, please.  Really. You might help me regain a little sanity.
Plus, this was really, really scary to write.
I think I need a hug.


  1. Totally awesome. I knew there was more than one good reason I started following you. My fave: “I grok your crazy…” Love it!

    This is probably an exercise I would benefit from doing once a month for the next twelve months. Write it from scratch every month and see what changes and what doesn’t, but then again, the head exploding every month might not be a healthy habit.

  2. Andy dolph /

    Wow. I find all this deep musing hugely inspirational, though I can’t put in to words how or why.

    And I LOVE your art.


  3. Hey Tori–I say you get an “A+” for effort and originality from Naomi’s challenge.

    Just checking out my fellow teacher pet peeps.

    Good luck with the circus 😀

  4. Andrea J. Phillips /

    I’m finding that both you and Ms. Naomi IttyBiz have an uncanny way of making me think very hard about things I thought I’d already figured out. (That’s a good thing … so, thanks!)

  5. I cannot believe I’ve never been to your site before! It’s so cool! You’re now in my feed reader.

    I hear you on not quite knowing what you do. I’m still figuring it out myself.

  6. Wow.

    I clicked through from IttyBiz and just wanted to say hello.

    I’ve never met a soul painter before and I must say, I’m fascinated and confused at the same time – in a good way!

    I too answered Naomi’s siren song on my own blog of you’re so inclined.

    Have a great weekend!


  7. Tori Deaux /

    @Kirsten “I grok your crazy” may become my new sig line. I’m digging it! And it probably would be a good idea to revisit this much more frequently, especially when what-we-do is in development and transition. Maybe our heads wouldn’t explode so much if we stayed in practice?

    @Andy I’m happy to inspire beyond words – You and I both do that, I think. It’s fun, even if it makes describing what-we-do awfully hard. (Remind me sometime and I’ll show you some other art that might really be up your alley)

    @Linda great to meet you too! *passing you a gold star*

    @Andrea You’re very welcome. That’s something I really like doing, shaking up perceptions until it forces me to take a second (or third, or fourth) look.

  8. Tori Deaux /

    @Shawna, it’s a brand spanking new site… so nearly everyone is just now discovering it. And I’m so glad you’re here, I’d love to have you add your perspective on things as they move along!

    @Jeff Hello back to you! And… yeah. I don’t know what the soul painter thing was about, but it was workin’ for me in the moment so I rocked it.

    This exercise was the strangest thing, really. The more I tried to make my answers fit the intent of the questions, the more vague everything became.

    But I kind of like the whole “fascinated and confused” thing. It means your mind is likely open, and I can monkey around in there freely 😉