Nothing defines our lives more than how we define our identity.
The word identity may confuse some people. Let me elaborate — I’m not talking about your name, picture or social security number. Simply stated your identity can be explained as how you would describe yourself in one sentence. Take a minute and describe yourself. Now take another minute to write that sentence down.
Next, I want you to look at that sentence and compare it to your life. Do you define your identity based on how you live or what’s inside of you? Is your identity based more on your dreams or your actions?
If we are to be honest with ourselves, I think we all would have two identities. One identity we truly believe in and one that others we share our lives with see. Why is it that deep inside we believe one thing, but in so many cases don’t actually live out that identity?
I’d offer there are many reasons for this disconnect, but I want to focus more on closing the gap.
How do we close the gap between our self-conceived identity and our lived identity?
1. Our Thoughts
As we move to connect reality with our inner identity we must adjust the thoughts we hold about ourselves. This is a quality that can be developed through practice. As we imagine our identity, a countering thought may immediately surface. This thought may come with evidence from the past. Your job is to replace that thought with one that is in line with our inner identity.
2. Our Words
Our words are just as important as our thoughts. Its our thoughts that ultimately serve as the prelude to our words. In every instance where you notice yourself forming the thought and intending to speak in contrast to your inner identity — stop yourself.
3. Our Actions
As we start to take a more disciplined approach to our thoughts and words, we finally get to what we do. As we hold the thought, make the declaration (speak) and move to actions be just as disciplined. Align all you do with your inner identity.
Is what you’re doing today, really you?