Ryan LeVanseler on Building a Personal Brand: Unleashing the Power of Authenticity
Ryan LeVanseler is the founder of Seeds to Dreams
Firstly, many people fear the words 'personal brand' as it means going public with your thoughts. I want to know if you have always found it easy to 'put yourself out there'?
No, it has not always been easy to put myself out there and share my story with the world. It's something that I contemplated for a long time and I almost went down another path. It took a lot of dedication and discipline to break free from the chains that once held me down. The fear of failure, judgment, rejection, retaliation, isolation, and being misperceived was overwhelming at times. I carried a lot of trauma from my past that I had to work through to reach the point I'm at now. I know beyond a doubt, if I can do it and help others do it, anyone reading this can too. I would do it again, over and over. Ask yourself, where does the fear even stem from? Let it teach you. Use it for good. Don't give power to the illusions in your mind. You're worth more.
When it comes to building an authentic personal brand, what advice would you give professionals starting out?
To observe the fear and learn from it, but not attach to it. To adjust when necessary, but to stay focused on the original dream. To share your energy without masking, lying, or expecting anything in return. To be aware of every outcome, but to keep yourself grounded and balanced in the present moment and not worried about the past or future. To flow with the river and not fight against it, while embracing the unknown. To listen to others, but to follow your heart. To honor every experience for what it is.
Do you think personal branding and reputation go hand in hand, and what can people do to maintain a positive reputation while brand-building?
Yes, I do. What would our brands be without others? If no one likes what we offer or benefits from it, what can we really accomplish? What can we do without connection and what would the point be? I believe in order to maintain a positive reputation, we must look in the mirror and remain completely honest with ourselves. What do we see? What do others see? How do we keep growing in a positive way that helps the cause and everyone who interacts with it? I hold tight to the "Golden Rule" - to treat others like we want to be treated. If we move with pure intentions and from a place of love, others feel it. They appreciate it. They learn from it. They remember it.
Can you share a success story of how you or someone you follow used their personal brand to build business or career?
I believe success is subjective and what one may see as a win, another will see as a failure. I'm not at this point with Seeds to Dreams yet, but the adventure has just started. I know many people who have turned their personal brand into a full-time business, some using it to help others and the world too. There are many I could list, but they're not my stories to share, especially since I don't know all the details. I will say, they inspire me daily.
Which platforms do you find most effective for establishing thought leadership and growing professional presence?
Any platform where I can connect with the audience directly. TikTok has been great because it's like video chatting with someone and allows me to engage with them on a personal level, especially when I live stream and can communicate without delay. I enjoy writing articles and doing interviews too, but there's something special about broadcasting my entire presence.
How do you ensure your personal brand stays true to who you are and your evolving goals?
I remain authentic and share my true thoughts and feelings in each moment, despite any fears that may appear. I listen to my heart and let it guide the way, observing every outcome and adjusting when necessary. I learn and adapt as I keep moving and changing. I listen to my audience and treat them as I treat myself, with pure love and respect.
What are some practical strategies or tactics professionals can use to expand their network and build meaningful connections?
To put themselves in others' shoes and view things from their perspective. If they were the ones watching or listening, would their message resonate and inspire? Does it help anything or anyone? Does it contribute to the world? Would they want to connect and help build more, or would they move onto something else? To put themselves out into the world as is, and remain confident in who they are and what they do. To remember why they started and hold onto that feeling. By doing so, the right people are attracted and the wrong ones disappear. Space is created where they can align with their real desires. To ask for help and to remain in a receptive state with an open mind, and an open heart.
Along your personal branding journey, have you encountered any common obstacles that readers of this interview should be aware of?
I've encountered more obstacles than I can list... ranging from a lack of resources, energy, faith, and more. I've been met with doubt from others, I've been attacked, I've been left alone, and I've cried many tears. Through all of this, I refuse to give up, for I know where it will all lead. Don't focus on the obstacles. Focus on how you can get around them. Focus on how high you can jump. Focus on the "impossible"
Imagine you have a time machine that can transport you to the future. What impact do you envision your personal brand having on the world?
Since I've started this journey with Seeds to Dreams, I've been focusing on helping people heal from past experiences and shift their perception so they can truly live life on their own terms in a state of profound peace. I've been guiding and teaching in ways most may never understand. One heart and soul at a time, which ultimately helps more. It's like the single sunflower seed that's planted into dirt, only to become a massive flower a few months later, producing hundreds of other seeds. From there, they keep multiplying and can become a vast field of beauty for all to enjoy. I receive countless messages from "strangers" all over the world, telling me I've saved their lives and helped them with things no one else could in over 30-40 years. They say they were able to accomplish dreams they never believed. I'm told they've tried everything from therapy, medication, and more, but I was the one to help them change... sometimes just from a 1-3 minute TikTok video. I don't just imagine, I know... when this project expands further and I'm able to do the things I plan, the ripple will be beyond words. With enough time and reach, the possibilities are endless. I'm beyond excited and grateful to be in such a position, especially after what I went through in life. I now know it was all for this and what's to come.
Close your eyes and imagine you're a bestselling author. What captivating book would you write to share your personal brand journey and insights?
People ask me to write books often, and I've felt a deep calling to do so my entire life. I've always been a huge fan of writing starting from a young age, especially after I published a book with my 4th grade class in elementary school. I wish I could find it, but it was a gift to my grandma and sadly disappeared when she passed on from this realm. I've held onto many ideas for different books over the years that I know will change many lives, but I've yet to dive in and start the process. I'm talking about self-help books, details of my entire journey on this planet, novels, stories for children, and the list goes on. I'll write them eventually, but I get overwhelmed with life and all my other daily tasks that are required to survive and keep things moving forward. One day I'll have the time, resources, and proper direction to proceed and succeed.
Thanks so much for sharing your knowledge with us here! Where should people follow you to find out more about your work?