The subject of many songs, a small part of many movie plots, an intricate aspect of many books, especially of the self-help nature. A battle of varying degrees, that I believe everyone eventually finds themselves in at some point in time… What is it you wonder?
Not what, but who… The question we pose to ourselves… Who am I? I mean really? Who am I really? What is my value… my purpose? Where do I fit in? Where do I stand out? What makes me… me?
People have an interesting need to define themselves. Commonly their search for definitions push them one of two ways. You either see people either striving to be “part of the group” or else striving to “be apart from the herd”. Either way, it stems from a similar personal wish to identify ones self. There is a problem that creeps up with this, and it is why some people really do get lost “Looking for themselves”
While we tend to want to neatly define who it is we actually are, that is not how we were made. By nature, we are dynamic and fluid. Our actual being is consistently changing, expanding and contracting with each experience, with each new second, with each new thought, and each new lesson learned. Who I am this second, is not who I was yesterday, nor is it who I will be tomorrow, and really I thank God that is true!
If I had been created static being, while there may be a small amount of pleasure in finally being able to have a set definition to totally and completely describe myself, and outline my purpose and my reasoning, I fear that my life would be incredibly limited to my outline. I would be more like a program executing commands, than a human living a life.
We tend to want the all the answers, neatly outlined.. and usually, we want them right NOW! But really, where is enjoyment in that? While answers are nice to have, there are many side lessons learned in the pursuit of any given answer. The ability to change, and to move beyond our past perceptions is vital. We shouldn’t be so eager to give it up. Despite the attraction of having “neater” packaging.
Try as you may, you will never really have a set definition to answer “Who you are”. It is a project you can never totally accomplish, because as soon as you think you know, something will happen that alters part of what you had previously thought of as truth.
Besides, its not about us anyway. When we labor so hard to “find ourselves”, and focus on defining who we are, we are missing a huge point.
In the grande scheme of things, we won’t be remembered by how we define ourselves, that will be lost when we are. Any memory of us after we are gone is going to be more related to what events we caused, who we inspired, and how we helped others.
We are who we are right this second, so focus instead on making the most out of the present.