The Dangers of Defining Who You Are

Take an idea of who you are. Paint a full picture – what are your strengths and weaknesses? What makes you beautiful and what are your flaws? What can you do really well? What are you absolutely not good at?

Now, ditch that. Get rid of it all.

I do get it, it’s nice to know who we are. It’s comfort zone. Our storm-proof definition gives us a warm feeling of certainty. It does our ego good to simply keep doing what you know the best and, supported by all onlookers, avoid anything else.

But, there is a little catch to having everything sorted.

Any set image of yourself is simply blocking you from growing outside that image. As if you had a ‘life menu’, you go and rip out whole pages because ages ago you decided you’d stick to eating just soups. You’re a ‘soup’ person. You’re a soup person even though that dessert laying across the table sparks a bit of jealousy.

So just like that, I have for example never been a sports person. Picked last, generally clumsy and full of comparisons to my athletic brother. Of course as a child I would run around and play games, but somewhere along the way I picked up this imaginary label and stopped.

Often we do not realise how much trouble these unnecessary labels get us into. I accepted is as a natural state of things to dread sport activities and feel insecure about my body. I missed out on so many nice experiences just because of some negative rambling my head would produce at the time and all for absolutely no reason.

But well, leaving past as it is, what is even scarier is how these belief could mess with my future had I not decided to test them. I would probably never start doing the things that make me happy and are perfectly possible to do, just because of ‘not being that kind of a person’. The definition perfectly summarising all sort of belief bullshit there is.


‘I am not a type of girl guys would notice and ask for a date.’

‘I am not the kind of person to be good and responsible with money.’

‘I am not a guy who could just go and quit a bad job.’

‘It’s not very me to be so honest and vulnerable.’

We use these labels as a protection from things that scare us. Unfortunate thing is, we’re protecting ourselves from things that could be damn amazing.

In most cases, it is simply impossible to naturally be or not to be any of those things. We are not born responsible or feeling self-worthy or good at pretty much anything. You learn it all as you go – some things sooner, some things later. Some things will be easier given your talents and character but nothing at all is impossible.

I’m not trying to say that you should go and do all the stuff you don’t like or be crazy reckless. I simply suggest a second look at who you think you are and why you keep thinking that, especially all of the negative limiting definitions.

Sometimes it is good to feel the potential of a clean start.

And crazy thing is, you could do that every day. You could do that your whole life.


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