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5 Steps To Re-Define Yourself

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5 Steps To Re-Define Yourself

By Anne-Marie Botek, AgingCare.com Editor

Who are you?

Three words; so simple to read, so difficult to understand. People spend decades trying to respond to this question before they eventually realize that it’s unanswerable—who we are is always changing.

So we come up with a stopgap. We describe ourselves as mothers, daughters, employees, spouses, caretakers, etc., answering the question of who we are by pointing to the most prominent role we play at any given point in time.

This way of thinking—while convenient—has its drawbacks. It doesn’t take long to feel pigeon-holed, trapped within the narrow confines of the very definitions we helped create.

“People are fluid,” says Janice Taylor, author, columnist and life coach for Virtual Shoulder.com, and we need to start seeing ourselves that way. “We are not defined by one role,” she says, “We think of ourselves as nouns—but we are really verbs. We are beings.”

Beings in motion are stressed

It should be easy for us to see ourselves as verbs. After all, thanks to the full-throttle nature of modern day life, we’re always doing something.

We bounce between dozens of daily tasks: working, driving our kids to soccer practice, making dinner, trying to find to time to go on a date with our spouse or significant other.

And our sense of self is often the first thing that gets sacrificed to the gods of stress and social pressure. “Society tells you what you’re supposed to do and how you’re supposed to feel,” Taylor says, “But you need to tell yourself that it’s okay to have fun and be true to who you are.”

Portrait of a whole person

You can’t be true to yourself until you know who that self is. Which brings us back to that original, eternal question: Who are you?

Read More:
Start Forgiving Yourself To Stop Guilt
Beat Burnout, Be Honest With Yourself and Others
How to Get Yourself in a Happier Place

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32 comments

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11:16PM PDT on Sep 1, 2012

Always good articles from AgingCare, thanks.
I'm often astounded by how two strangers can talk for absolute ages .... And I see the point of the comment that both me and the other person have no pre-conceived ideas about the other - something which often gets in the way between people.
You leave each other often after revealing your soul.... because the stranger touched you at your core.

1:34PM PDT on Aug 26, 2012

Thanks, will take to heart.

7:27AM PDT on Aug 26, 2012

Interesting. Thank you for sharing.

2:35PM PDT on Aug 25, 2012

redefining yourself isnt as hard as it seems, its getting others to let go of who you used to be that can be a challenge.

4:32AM PDT on Aug 25, 2012

Good stuff to start the day--thanks!

3:49AM PDT on Aug 25, 2012

Brilliant article with some ideas I wouldn't have considered before. Thanks

1:33PM PDT on Aug 24, 2012

Use colorful stickers on your calendar to show progress towards your goal!

1:07PM PDT on Aug 24, 2012

noted

9:10AM PDT on Aug 24, 2012

interesting, thanks.

8:27AM PDT on Aug 24, 2012

..and also love thy neighbor , no no no no ...not her wife ... that could be dangerous

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.

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