Wednesday, August 20, 2014
Identities Are Definitions
What you identify with defines you. How often do we think about that?
(Just look at the words themselves: “identified”/“defined” … “identify”/”define”)
Realize the significance of this. The identity you choose to go by doesn't just influence your entire existence; it helps shape it. [Definitions are forms, after all.] So the question we must ask ourselves is: does our present identity – our present definition – of who/what we are, benefit us... or, is it hurting us?
Recognize that, as identities are definitions by default, they're also inherently limiting. Some limitations promote growth and development (“be careful what you wish for”); others lead to stagnation or decay. If the identity you choose to go by isn't promoting growth and development in your life – whether it be “American”, “African”, “Black”, “White”, “Businessman”, “Thug”, “Lawyer”, “Doctor”, “Tanya”, or “Terrell” - consider changing it to one that will.
Yes, you can change your identity; why not? Your identity, when it is merely how you define yourself to others in society, is not who you are: it's who you “play”. [When your identity is in agreement with your life and how you live, it serves as a symbolic representation of your self – the “true you”, which is largely undefined, and far greater than most of us dare to acknowledge.] “Know your role”.
Is our primary identity healthy, or unhealthy? Is our predominant definition of ourselves serving us and our families/communities, or is it opposed to those? In other words: are the thoughts, words, and actions being directed under our current identity constructive, or destructive? As it relates to events taking place within every individual, home, and country on the planet today, these questions are of the utmost seriousness, and worthy of everyone's reflection.