We live in a world with a lot of systems, certain expected ways of doing things. Everything needs to be categorized, to fit within predesigned boxes.
That may work great for organizing possessions or finding the uses of a particular tool. But people… Unique and wonderfully designed human beings, are not made to function this way.
Who you are is not a multiple choice question
Yes, you may be a parent, or a woman, or an employee. You may be an artist, or an accountant, or a mechanic. You may be creative, or detail-oriented, or compassionate. There are so many words that can be used to describe you. But these words do not define you.
Let’s try something here. Choose one word that describes who you are.
Now think about what the word means at it’s most basic definition. For example, Google defines wife as: “a married woman considered in relation to her spouse.”
At it’s very foundation, this is it. This is all it means, all you can generalize about this word. After this, things start to get personal.
Because you are described by a word and not defined by it, you cannot give deeper meaning to that word without applying it individually.
We can make a lot of assumptions about what a [fill in the blank] should look like. It can be defined differently depending on our family, our culture, our faith… And these definitions are needed in many ways, to give us a place of belonging or to help us grow and relate to others. But there are some definitions that we really just need to shake off.
Dig a little deeper and think about what you picture when you hear that word you chose. What does a [fill in the blank] do, what do they not do? What does it mean to be a [fill in the blank], what do they look like?
How many of your answers to those questions sound like you? And how many don’t?
It’s ok if what you pictured doesn’t look like you. It just means that particular picture is meant to describe someone else. It does NOT define you.
You are a unique person.
You don’t fit into any square box. You cannot be categorized. You are not what you do, or where you live, or who you’re around. A word that describes you can also describe someone else. And they may look completely different than you. That’s ok. They are not you. You are you.
You have personal gifts, skills, experiences, talents, thoughts, and feelings that have all worked together to make you who you are right now.
Don’t cheapen yourself by trying to fit in somewhere you don’t belong.
You are a piece of a puzzle. There is a spot for you. You have a role. When you try to define yourself by someone else’s standards, it is impossible to complete the picture. You will not fit in over there when you were made to connect right here.
So find your place. The place where you can thrive. The place where you can be yourself. The place where you can work alongside others to make each other whole. The place where you are doing things you love. The place where you are using your gifts. The place where you can simply be… you.
Whoever that may be.