Why I Went from @CoachDian to @DianReid

by Dian Reid-Jancic· Follow Dian on

Yesterday I switched my username on Twitter from @CoachDian to @DianReid, a change that’s been in the works (AKA, playing pinball in my brain) for months. Funny thing is, I thought it would be painful and complicated, but when it came down to it, the process was pretty simple and painless. It was all the pinball action inside my head, asking but how do you do that? and what for? and how many followers will you lose? and why, why, for the love of God, why would you create change and havoc in my life, woman?!

The Why

When I began using Twitter back in 2008 I didn’t really understand it. I mean, who does in the beginning? I knew I certainly didn’t want to share that I was having a potato chip or staying in for the night watching The Breakfast Club or I’d just had an argument with my cat. I wanted my tweets to be focused. To be about business. To shine the light on what I do as a life coach. That’s what would set me apart from the nearly 2 million other Tweeters (in June 2008).

What I’ve realized since then is that my business isn’t what sets me apart from the rest of the tweeting coaches out there, it’s me. You know … Dian Reid. Now I’m not saying that I’m better than all the other tweeting coaches out there, I’m simply saying that I’m me. I’m more Dian than I am Coach Dian.

Coach Dian implies that I’m all business all the time. I almost feel guilty sharing information that’s not coaching related, let alone related to my specific niche in coaching. So I’m not gonna do that anymore. Oh, I’m still going to tweet about personal development and coming out and growing the successes in the LGBT Community. I’m just not going to feel guilty about the tweets that don’t focus on my business.

No, this doesn’t mean I’m going to start tweeting about eating a potato chip or arguments with my cat (probably), it just means that there’s freedom in being @DianReid. Freedom in not having to be @CoachDian. Better for me, better for you, better for us.

And about that pinball game in my head…

The Pinball Brain

I’ve heard many an expert refer to my little game as “analysis paralysis.” Where you gather so much information about the action you want to take or the idea you have, that you get stuck on going back and forth between all of your data, analyzing this and that and the other thing, then comparing it to the thing before and what ifs galore.

Your good intention paralyzes you, and you don’t move forward for fear you’re making a wrong move, if not the wrong move (you know, the move that ruins all other moves, rendering you a failure). You want to believe the timing’s just not right, or that you need XYZ to be in place and it’s not, but really it’s your fear of moving forward that keeps you from taking action. Not like I know this from experience, or anything.

Here’s what helped me make a decision about my moniker: Ask ‘Why’ five times.

Why do I want to change my Twitter handle? I just feel like it doesn’t fit me anymore.

Why doesn’t it fit me anymore? I’m not always Coach Dian, sometimes I’m just me.

Why does being just me matter to my Twitter handle? It’s who I am, dammit, and I want to express who I am and what I believe in, and not just what a life coach should be expressing!!

So then why do I want to change my Twitter handle? I’m always Dian Reid, actually, not just sometimes.

And one more time, Dian … why the change? What’s important about the change? Putting “Coach” in front of Dian assumes there’s a difference between the two. The truth is that sometimes I’m a coach, but always I’m Dian. And Dian is who I want people to connect with.

And so, the pinball game ceases to dance and flash and bounce around in my now clear and focused brain.

The Point

Coming to this understanding with myself cleared my path for action. No longer did it matter that I might lose some followers, or that some might not follow me because they wouldn’t be able to tell I’m a coach by my Twitter name. Truth be told, if you’re following me because I have “Coach” in my Twitter name, you’re following me for the wrong reasons.

I want connections, and real life, and human interaction. I don’t want tips and tricks and how-to make my life all meaningful and stuff. I want Resonant feelings and conversations and life stories, with and from who get me for me. Not because I’m Coach, but because I’m Dian.


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