It is up to you to determine who you are. It is up to you to decide who or what defines you. You should be relying on yourself and not others to tell you who you are. No one or no thing should be defining you, but Y-O-U!
So, how do you define Y-O-U? We can start by talking about who you are. You are the energy that flows through every cell in your body. You are your soul. You are your spirit.
Now, let’s talk about what you are not. You are not the “things” that you acquire or wish to acquire during your lifetime. “Things” do not define you. The job that you have, the amount of money you earn each week, the size of your bank account, the neighborhood that you live in, the car that you drive, expensive jewelry, and designer clothes are not who you are.
So, how do you determine who or what defines you? We can start by asking questions. Are you creative? Are you brilliant? Are you talented? Are you honest? Are you empathetic? Are you passionate about everything that you do? Do you have a sense of direction? Are you living your life with a sense of purpose? The answers to these questions will help define you who you are.
Your actions define you. The manner in which you treat the souls who walk among us who are erroneously characterized as “the least among us” – the homeless, the poor, the sick, the disabled — is what defines you. Do you greet them with kindness and respect when your paths cross? Or do you summarily dismiss them, pretend that they are invisible, and greet them with disdain and disrespect? Do you create chaos and dissension? Are you a consensus builder? When disputes arise and tempers flare, are you moving the sparring parties to seek common ground? Are you a peacemaker or are you escalating a potentially volatile situation? Keeping or breaking your promises defines who you are. If you make promises and do not honor them, your actions speak volumes about your trustworthiness. On the other hand, if you deliver on the promises that you make, you are telling the world: “You can trust me. My word is my bond.”
Your compassion or lack of empathy defines you. Your conduct and your character define you. Your beauty, your youth, your wealth, and your weight do not define who you are. Substance and not superficiality is what really moves the world. And substance is the only thing that you should allow yourself to be moved by. You are defined by your courage . . . the courage to step out on faith or to stand in your own truth under the most difficult set of circumstances or when the odds are glaringly stacked against you . . . the courage to allow yourself to be vulnerable.
Your belief in yourself defines who you are.
So, who are you?
Author: Diane A. Sears, 2014 International Men’s Day – United States Coordinator (www.imd-global.org).
Chair, USA 2012-2022 International Men’s Day Ten Year Plan. Member, International Men’s Day Coordination Committee.