Why Defining Your Identity Is Crucial to Your Personal Growth

“Human identity is the most fragile thing that we have, and it’s often only found in moments of truth.” Alan Rudolph

Your identity is what defines your reality. Think about that for a moment. It defines the realms of your possibility, and defines the boundaries for the things you are permitted to do. The first step towards becoming a new man is to give yourself a new definition of who you are. Only then can you have this definition become a part of your reality, align it with your nature and have it become consistent with your identity.

Security and confidence are but the start of the benefits that a definite identity gives you. You become at peace with yourself and are less likely to be rattled or influenced by inputs outside your sphere of influence.

Think about the majority of people who start a diet plan, only to fall back into their old ways in time. Why does this happen? Because they identify themselves as fat, or overweight, and repeating this to themselves over and over again ultimately gives them permission to drop the diet altogether.

People who try to overcome shyness too fall into a similar trap. At the first sign of an uncomfortable situation, they tell themselves that it’s too difficult for them to change. And they never do.

What happens to those who are afraid of talking to women? They might conjure up the courage to talk and approach a few of them, but they are always driven by their fear, which tells them “There is no way someone like her would go for a guy like me. It’s just not possible”. This irrational fear of rejection drives all of their actions and undermines all of their possible relationships with the opposite sex.

Now even though the people in the examples above might have had the right ideas, there was something they were clearly lacking. There was something that kept them from ever achieving their goals even though they tried to take positive action towards eliminating one of their flaws.

The basic problem with all of the above examples was that none of these people actually created an identity shift that would allow them to naturally behave like their ideals. Because they were constantly driven by their fears, it was easier for them to fall back into old habits at the first sign of discomfort. This was because their fear defined their sense of self.

It’s like going out and grabbing all the self-help books you can find in the library, and sitting and reading them cover to cover and expecting to be transformed by the time you finish reading. You might logically “feel” that you have some new information that allows you to act differently, but until this change takes place at a deeper, more subconscious level, you will not see any lasting changes.

It does not mean that taking affirmative action does not help. It definitely does, and in most cases getting over your irrational fear of the objective is a major part to achieving your goals. But we need to realize that there is a gut-level change that needs to occur for you to act like your ideal self would, unconsciously, without thinking about it. If in your mind you are the shy one in the group, then no amount of talking to people will help. If you always see yourself as the overweight guy, then no diet plan will help you.

Your identity is the collection of your beliefs about who you are. If you believe that you are an alpha male, a leader of the pack, then this will come through in your actions. If you believe that you are confident, attractive and desirable, then your actions will reflect this without you even trying. Always remember that there is a deeper mechanism at work than just what we see in our surface interactions with the outside world. Define who you are, and watch a whole new world of possibilities open up for you.

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