There are a million and one things that make up you. Our identity is a collection of thousands of factors that affect us daily. Many small things like our favorite childhood show make a difference. Then there are big things like the college or fraternity you graduate from that add to you. And many of us find our identity as the titles we have garnered over the years.
But there’s more to who we are than mom, dad, teacher, student, employee, and owner. We’re all so quick to attach our identity to our titles. It makes us feel more important. But the most important part of our identities is the identity we’ve given ourself. Who do we think we are? Beyond the titles that others have given you, who are you?
Here’s who I am and my thoughts on it.
There’s so many different parts of our identities these days. We’re usually proud to identify with our career titles and our accomplishments. We jump at the opportunity to say we’re manager of this company or senior developer at this startup. We also love to identify with our historical ethnicities and family ancestry. I’m a free-spirited Jamaican.
These are pretty normal ways to determine our identity. That’s how it’s always been. The problem is that almost all these titles we’ve accumulated are outside factors. Over the years, we’ve consistently looked at others to help us define who we are. And that’s sad. We shouldn’t look outward, but rather within. That’s where we’ll find out our true identity.
When I take the time to think of my true identity, a few things change. There’s nothing that has to do with being nigerian, carribean, african american, an entrepreneur, or any of that stuff. Those things don’t define me from within. When I look within, the person I am is simple. I’m just a curius kid that asks too many questions.
That’s who I am in a nutshell. There might be more here and there, but the core is the same. It sounds so nonchalant and not special at all. That’s by design. I’m not anyone anymore special than you. I’m no more special than a homeless guy on the corner that’s at an all time low. And I’m no less special than Jeff Bezos the world’s most wealthy man. That’s a key part of my identity. I’m human like everyone else.
Another key part is that I’m just a kid. I could of wrote adult, human, person or any other pronoun. But it’s important that I distinguish the part of me being a kid. I’ve always had a child’s mindset. I’ve always felt young and passionate in life. Every day is meant to be seized and that’s the kid’s energy within me. Everyone’s in a rush to grow up and adult. I could live with my mom with no job or responsibilities pretty much forever.
The last part of that statement is the questions. I ask too many damn questions. I don’t know why but I was born this way. I’m endlessly eager to learn and explore things. I love this mentality. It’s a big part of what makes me, Tim. I’m always overthinking and questioning things in the world around me. That is what I believe gives me the knowledge and insight I have into the world. I mean I’m literally asking and answering one question a day. Clearly, I ask too many damn questions.
That’s me. That’s who I am. That’s my identity in a nutshell. It’s not the titles the world gave me. It’s not what people want me to be. It’s not what others see when they look at Tim. It’s what Tim sees when Tim looks at Tim. That’s my identity now tell me yours!