An identity crisis is usually triggered by a major change in lifestyle: a divorce, death of a spouse, job loss, foreclosure, reaching a milestone birthday or the kids leaving the nest.
Not all identity crises are bad. The anxiety associated with identity crisis can be the catalyst that you need to make a positive change in your life.
If not handled properly, however, an identity crisis can lead to crippling negative emotions such as depression, anxiety and impulsiveness.
- Be secure
- Watch what you link to
- Reject outside influence
Be secure in your own personal ID. Remember that your identity is that of your own choosing. You can change it anytime you wish.
Changing identities is a natural progression of life. Our identities as children are far different than those in adulthood. Our identity changes once we graduate, once we move out of our parent’s home, once we get a job.
The identity crisis usually comes when we are faced with a change that is not of our own choosing. We become insecure and lost. We are faced with the painful prospect of self-discovery. Embrace this as a way to enhance your life and to learn more about yourself.
You must remember that you have survived this long and will survive the change that is upon you. Although the change was not necessarily your choice, your new identity (what you make of that change) is entirely your choice.
Confidence comes before competence.
Be confident enough in yourself and your abilities to make the right choices, choices that are good for you and visualize yourself safely arriving at the next level. Visualize your new future, not the past.
Affirm yourself often during the change. Be especially diligent in praising and rewarding yourself for little accomplishments (I was able to sleep in my bed three days after Joey’s funeral. Good for me.)
Watch what you link to
Sometimes we bring on the crisis ourselves because we linked our personal identity to temporarily things.
Did you identify yourself only as Timmy’s girlfriend? Now that you’ve broken up, who are you?
The comb over is an undisputed sign of a man going through an identity crisis. He sees himself as a young man with a head full of hair, his hair becoming is identity. The rest of us see a comb over.
Did you identify yourself as owner of ABC company, only to lose your company? Or maybe you were identified as the person with the beautiful garden, only to lose your house. Or maybe you were the beautiful blonde who can no longer fight those tiny lines and wrinkles.
Although you will always be Jimmy’s mother, Jimmy no longer needs you to lay out his pajamas now that he’s married.
Now is the time to take an inventory.
Who are you long-term? What do you like to do? What kind of personality do you have? What are you good at? These are permanent things, things that you can easily identify yourself with.
Spend some time exploring new interests. Take a vacation, join a club, do something different. Who knows you may find a new identity in the process.
Make a written list of who you want the new you to be and then spend your time building your new identity.
Reject outside influences
Don’t accept the influence of others in forming your new identity. You can get their suggestions and support, but YOU are responsible for your new identity.
Include your friends, family and loved ones in your new adventures, but build a new ID that will be best for you.
Before you know it, the crisis will be over.
If you know of a positive blog that I can link to here, please let me know on Facebook.
8 Ways to Become a Superstar (living4bliss.wordpress.com)
When the Bucket List is All Checked (living4bliss.wordpress.com)
A Candle-Lighter Award for my Mom (allaboutthelemon.com)
Don’t Wallow in the Darkness (edrobinson.wordpress.com)
Ups and Downs (zendictive.wordpress.com)
Identity Crisis (thedustymuscle.wordpress.com)
Identity crisis (christinelaennec.co.uk)
BLACK HISTORY MONTH CONTEST
We have a little more than a week left in the Black History Month Contest. I am sharing the 21 African-Americans who influenced me the most. If you are the first person to guess who my #1 influence is, you will win a $47 Purpose Driven Woman Boot Camp courtesy of fellow blogger Taquila Coleman.
7. John Hope Franklin
8. Benjamin O. Davis
13.James Weldon Johnson
17. Paul Laurence Dunbar
18. Maya Angelou
19. Langston Hughes
20. Nikki Giovanni
21. Marian Anderson
WHO DO YOU THINK WILL BE #1?