Fill In The Blank
I’m not the kind of person who _______________
I’m not the kind of person who likes to dress up or wear make up.
I’m not the kind of person who likes make small talk.
I’m not the kind of person who brags about my accomplishments.
Except that, sometimes I like getting dressed up and wearing make up (when I feel like it). And I do like making small talk, when I want to get to know someone. And sometimes I want to tell someone about the work I’ve done.
The trouble comes when I have a set of ideas about who I am and I think… I’m not the kind of person who can do ‘whatever.’ (start a company, speak in front of people, travel to somewhere new… or whatever the challenge is.)
Sometimes our family see us in a certain way. I remember my mother once saw me in purple jumper. After that, she gave me clothes that were purple, even though I told her that I didn’t like purple. She got this idea in her head about me, and somehow… it stuck.
If the problem were only clothing, it wouldn’t be that big a deal. But most of others’ “stuck” expectations of me are serious. I can tell they’d think… she’s not the kind of person who could go to college, work that kind of job, go to Europe… whatever. And families are just one kind of ‘definer’. The world is full of them.
Who Do I Think I Am?
When I’m in the world, lots of people have ideas about me based on how I look or where I live or what I do for a living. The truth is, not much of what they think is important or even true. Because each person I encounter, brings with them biases, needs, ideas, or problems with “people like me.”
It’s better if I don’t worry too much about what others think or say about my choices. I can still listen to caring advice, but only if I ask for it.
The more I turn off the, “I’m not the kind of person” tape and turn on the “I’m the kind of person who is learning to be, the kind of person I want to be,” the better. Don’t let others define you. They don’t know you. We’re all a work in progress. (If we’re brave.)
Image credit: Trying New Things