We all need a stable identity, the question, how to know who I am, cannot be answered ultimately in life, we need a name, this is, in almost every way, the fundamental battlefield of our entire life.
What makes it a battle? Because in the end, there is a correct and incorrect identity for each of us, there is a correct answer and a lot of incorrect answers for “who am I?” and in each era, the cultural moment presents a way to approach the search for these answers, how to find the name of a person.
Have you ever noticed that certain people tend to adopt the personality of the person they are with at any given moment, like a chameleon that changes color to blend in with its surroundings? Notice how their gestures, inflections, use of words, and perhaps even their opinions change, making you wonder who they are. Perhaps noticing these people has motivated you to reflect on whether you constantly act like yourself. Do you find yourself thinking, “I don’t know how to be myself when I don’t even know who I am?”
12 ways to know who I am
Your personality consists of those qualities that determine your attitudes and behavior. There are hundreds of personality characteristics: conscientiousness, optimism, sensitivity, openness to experience, etc. They have arisen as a result of their genetic makeup (nature) and what they have learned (nurture), and with respect to most of them, their experience has been and will continue to be at least as influential as their genetic makeup. This means that you always have the option to develop and change the characteristics that make up your personality.
When we have our own sense of identity, we can make decisions and navigate life more easily, we can include people in our lives who are emotionally healthy and with whom we can share ourselves in a healthy way. Learning about ourselves and developing a strong sense of identity can help us feel more satisfied and happy because we can better guide our lives toward what we want.
The following tips can help you develop a better sense of who you are and increase self-awareness:
What’s your story?
Your story is more than a list of the events in your life, it is about your image of yourself, how you see yourself, what shape your mind, what memories were imprinted on you. Collectively, your story tells you where you are in the cycle of life.
What are your expectations?
Expectations are seeds, once planted, they are manifested in those things that we gain from life, or lose. When you realize your own expectations, you discover the unspoken limits that you have set for yourself. There is a big difference between those who expect great things and those who don’t.
What is your purpose?
This is the meaning that you are trying to find, the purpose is deeper than the superficial things that we hope to obtain, which mostly focus on money, possessions, status and comfort. If you know your purpose, you know the deepest project your life is dedicated to.
Which is your destination?
This is about fulfillment, human goals are endless; they unfold, not as a road that has an end, but as a river that flows to join the sea, merging with ever-greater possibilities. If you know your destiny, you can imagine its greatest fulfillment.
What is your way?
Having identified your purpose and your destination, there must be a way to get there. The path has been adopted as a spiritual term, but in fact everyone, spiritual or not, follows certain ways to get where they want to go.
Who are your adversaries?
Forward movement is never unhindered. On your way you will find blocks, sometimes, the adversary is external but if you examine yourself deeply you will discover that he is also always internal.
Who are your allies?
We all bring others with us on our journey, just as your adversaries did, you can identify these allies as external, but they only reflect your own inner strength, just as an opponent reflects your inner vulnerability.
What or who would you be if you knew you couldn’t fail?
The risk of failure terrifies most people. How many times have you wanted to change jobs or career, move to a new city, promote an important cause, or become an expert in a certain area? Think about it, there is no risk of failure.
What are your core personal values?
Personal values are the things that you think are important in the way you live, they give you a reference of what is good, beneficial, important, useful, desirable and constructive. Once you can determine exactly which values are the most important, you can better determine your priorities.
In fact, having this information about yourself is the key to making sure your daily life is aligned with those values.
What makes you really happy?
This is closely related to your core personal values. However, ask yourself this question once you’ve really determined what those values are.
For example, if family is one of your core personal values, will taking a job that involves tons of travel make you happy? Go one step further and really consider the dreams you had when you were younger or that you currently have about what will make you truly happy.
If money were not an object, how would you live your life differently?
Many people equate happiness and success directly with the amount of money they have. How many times have you heard someone say: “If I win the lottery, I …”
But remember, it’s not all about money, it’s more about thinking outside the bounds we tend to put about our aspirations and actions because things seem out of our financial reach.
You may not be able to do those exact things, but once you know what those true desires are, expand your thinking and begin to develop a plan to work toward goals you may never have imagined possible.
Listen to your mind and body
If you pay attention to them, feelings and physical cues can help you develop an awareness of your likes and dislikes. Your feelings and your body can tell you a lot about your thoughts and interests, when you participate in activities like drawing, sports or social events, how do you feel? Do you laugh and feel happy? Are you tense or relaxed? During what kinds of movies do you laugh or cry?
If you pay attention to them, feelings and physical cues can help you develop an awareness of your likes and dislikes.
These are difficult questions and the answers may not be easy or quick. In fact, I found myself having to think and rethink my answers several times, how to know who I am can be difficult but necessary work in order to really understand each other on a deeper level.
What are the benefits of knowing yourself?
Maybe it’s obvious, but here in a nutshell are a few reasons why you may want to know your own nature:
You will be happier when you can express who you are. Also, expressing your wishes will make it more likely that you will get what you want.
Less inner conflict
When your outer actions are in accordance with your inner feelings and values, you will experience less inner conflict.
Better decision making
When you know yourself, you can make better decisions about everything from small decisions like which sweater to buy to big decisions like who you will spend your life with, you will have guidelines you can apply to solve life’s many problems.
When you know yourself, you understand what motivates you to resist bad habits and develop good ones. You will have the perspective of knowing what values and goals activate your willpower.
Resistance to social pressure
When it is based on your values and preferences, you are less likely to say “yes” when you want to say “no.”
Tolerance and understanding of others
Your awareness of your own weaknesses and struggles can help you empathize with others.
Vitality and pleasure
Being who you really are helps you feel more alive and makes your life experience richer, bigger, and more exciting.
Now that you are convinced that it is worth knowing yourself.
I am sure that now the question of how to know who I am can have an answer from you, even if it is a bit complex, always changing and constantly evolving. So the next time you find yourself asking “Why don’t I know who I am?” Stop, reframe the question, and instead ask, “Who will I be right now and how would I like to express this?”
“Such freedom the only limit is the power of your imagination.”
Hello, how are you? My name is Georgia Tarrant, and I am a clinical psychologist. In everyday life, professional obligations seem to predominate over our personal life. It's as if work takes up more and more of the time we'd love to devote to our love life, our family, or even a moment of leisure.