Have you ever seen those self-help books or web sites that ask you to define who you are? If you’re like most people, you instinctively answer with a description of what you do. That is probably the point of those self-help queries … you are not ‘what you do’ you are ‘who you are’.
In our American society, however, we are often defined by what we do for a living or by our primary hobbies or interests. I am a radio commercial producer, talk-show interviewer, former DJ working for the biggest owner of radio stations on earth who is also an avid photographer, traveler, car enthusiast, blogger and would-be musician. But that is not really who I am, it is what I do.
So who are you?
I have a life-long friend who if asked that question, might say she is a teacher, mother, wife, female gear head and music enthusiast. But that is what she does or is interested in. My take on who she is: an adventurous, moderately risk-taking, caring educator who is passionate about life, love and music, an idealistic but realistic dreamer with a good heart and a desire to make select people in her life happy.
Another friend could answer the original question by saying she is a self-employed animal caretaker, rescuer, storm chaser, former quality control specialist and hotel front-desk employee. I see her as someone who is curious, passionate about all animals, caring and an idealistic dreamer and music-lover with a good heart and a desire to make select people in her life happy.
Yet another friend might say she is a psych tech, nursing school student, blogger, former bartender, socializing people person, and music and photography enthusiast. Those are things she does. My take: spontaneous yet grounded adventure-seeker, outwardly friendly but inwardly selective about friendships, artistic, thoughtful, creative, a music-lover with a good heart and a desire to make select people in her life happy.
Do this exercise for yourself about yourself. Makes you think, doesn’t it?
Who am I? I think I am a curious and idealistic-yet-realistic story teller, people connector, stubborn grounded free spirit who both sets and breaks boundaries, an artistic photography and music-lover with a good heart and a desire to make select people in my life happy.
Hmmm, I think I see a pattern connecting me and my friends. There is probably another blog story in that observation.
Tell me who you are in the comment section.
And if you are one of the three friends I mentioned in this post, tell me (privately) if you see yourself the way I see you … and tell me some more about your own impression of who you are.