We constantly make identifying statements (e.g. "I’m a quality professional or a lawyer or a doctor, etc.") in an effort to summarize and explain ourselves or our personalities. These declarations speak volumes about who we are to the person on the receiving end. But they carry a danger as well, for their interpretation is entirely subjective. For instance, if referring to yourself as a conservative to a liberal, suddenly a whole collection of images, ideas, characteristics and associations are attached to you from that one identifier that may have nothing to do with who you are.
Spend a moment thinking about where you source your identity? Is it your profession or whatever you've chosen to do with your life? Is it your political party, your religion, or ethnic heritage? For many of us, it is all of these things or none of them. We identify ourselves, all day long, in many different ways.
However, when titles and labels fall away, and they inevitably will, it's what's left, or our core, that really makes up our true identity. The key to creating a solid identity is to understand the substance behind the façade. To know that when you say, "I’m…," you are really identifying yourself with the essential truth behind those images, and not with the generally accepted persona of those images. When you achieve that level of self-awareness, no earthly circumstance will have the power to destroy your foundation.
Discovering your true identity, or inner self, is one of the most vitally important steps you can take toward lasting success and inner peace. It will be through transforming your identity, not by becoming something that you are not, but by changing the way that you frame who you are that you will reach fulfillment, and ultimate satisfaction, in your lifetime.
Limiting ourselves by applying labels of “just this” or “just that” is unfortunate. Many of us limit our identities in even more harmful ways by identifying ourselves by our weaknesses.
We hear so many powerful self-imposed labels today, whether they be, "I'm a drug addict; I'm in an abusive relationship; I'm a victim of this or that …." Each of those things is a very powerful condition. I'm certainly not dismissing the importance, value or influence those things have had on your life. But there is a deep, deep danger in defining ourselves and finding our identity in the circumstances that have befallen us.
Bottom line, you are not what others have thought of you, done to you or even what you have done to yourself in the outside world. You are much more than the combination of others' perceptions, your past achievements or the series of fortunate or unfortunate events you may have been a party to. You have the power in you to do unbelievable things. And one of them is to begin shaping an identity of success! It is up to you to discover your true identity and work toward all that you can be.
Spend a few moments in quiet thought to think about this message, what it means to you, and how you can use it to accomplish your goals.