How Do We Begin To Know Who We Are?
So I’ll ease you in with three simple words:
These are the words I would say to you if you asked me how to describe myself. I know this because of past career choices and I’m sharing this with you today because it mattered to me—still does.
Years ago, I was exposed to the content of 7 Habits of Highly Effective People. I became a trainer for the content and as a trainer, I took the content to heart, making it a part of my own practice.
7 Habits was one of the best things that happened to me personally and professionally. A turning point, as you might call it. I had never explored the question of who I am before. Not deeply anyway. And compiling myself into a simple statement wasn’t something I would have done on my own.
You may be wondering why is it necessary to do such a thing? Maybe you can already answer,
“Who am I?”
Maybe you can already say, “I know what’s important.”
And maybe you do. But what I’m talking about is knowing more than a few three word descriptions. Something you can point your life altering decisions back to. Maybe even describe yourself to someone else in such a way that they get it too. I like to call this what Covey calls it: a personal mission statement.
Mission Statements are what I consider agreements with the self–navigation for the mind. Your mission may also change because of life. I never consider anything I’ve thought about or written down a done deal. I’m constantly reworking, revisiting my mission. That’s what time does to us. It gives us different people, different experiences—changing our perspectives about life all that much clearer and greater.
So how do you begin?
Again, know how you learn best. For me, I need a quiet bright place. Maybe I begin with a favorite song, or an inspirational quote—something to open my mind to the creative process. Then with a pen in hand I free write, I doodle, I cover a page or maybe more with my ramblings. I start with a few words. Meaningful. And then I go for sentences. For me, my word of my life is Hope. So definitely hope was something I had to incorporate in my mission.
Lastly, I take a break.
The break is one of the best things you can give yourself because sometimes we get too deep. We need a breath of fresh air and maybe, when you come back and take another peek, your fresh perspective can give you that editing clarity you need to make your statement just how you want it.
So is there a formula?
No. When I wrote mine, I actually found one of my favorite poems and put all of my words into that format. All that matters is you—your inspiration and drive to make it who you are.
So my challenge for you is this: take 10 minutes to think about a few words that describe you. Write them down. Use your best medium whether it’s the computer, crayons, markers, or in my case, finger paint and a few helpful hands from my kiddos.
Next post, I’ll post the statement to see how my words turned out. .