Identity and deciding who we truly are

Dr Phil Hammond was talking about defining “health” recently. But five words he said in the middle of his speech have been coming back to me regularly over the past couple of weeks.

… one world and precious life…

We have one world and precious life, and if there’s one thing that’s holding us back from experiencing this one world and precious life in the way we would love to experience it, it’s the things going on inside our head.

Our inner voice can hold us back. For the fortunate among us it holds us back occasionally. For others it holds us back incessantly, projecting fears on us at almost every minute of almost every day.

Lewis Howes speaks about three fears in life.

  • the fear of failure, which prevents us from even trying
  • the fear of judgment by others, which compels us to live our life in the projected views of others
  • the fear of success, which would place new expectations and responsibilities upon us

The two things all those fears have in common is that (a) they exist exclusively inside our heads, and (b) they are bound up in the identity we’ve constructed, or that has been constructed for us by our environment.

Both of those can be changed. They can be changed by us.

The habits and behaviours of our minds can be changed. It takes some self-work and it takes some time, but it’s possible.

And our identity can also be changed. That also takes self-work and time, but the biggest thing it takes is a decision.

A decision to stop playing the role of an identity that isn’t fully us.

A decision to believe that our identity is a construction of time and circumstance and environment, and can be changed.

A decision to discover what it is that is truly us, and to give expression to it.

We are not what we do. We are not even what we have always done.

We are.

We are whatever we choose to be.

I am.

I am whatever I choose to be.

Finding out who and what we are, and giving expression to that because who we truly are is important, and starting first just by expressing it to ourselves, that can start right here, right now.

Not tomorrow, or next Monday, or January 1st.

Because who we are, who you are, who I am, is important.

I am whatever I choose to be.

And you are whatever you choose to be. Not what you used to be or what you’ve always done.