An identity crisis is when you behave differently than your personal ID (the way you define yourself.)

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.

If your bliss is being poisoned by an identity crisis, get yourself back on track with these 3 steps:

  • Be secure
  • Watch what you link to
  • Reject outside influence

Be secure

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.

Although, like a new pair of shoes, it may take a while before we break a new identity in and get comfortable with it, we usually make the transition smoothly when changing is OUR IDEA.

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.

Those who are closest to you will be the biggest critics of your new identity. They love you the way you were and are afraid that if you change, you will no longer love them.

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.

Related posts:

 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 (

When the Bucket List is All Checked (

Change (

A Candle-Lighter Award for my Mom (

Don’t Wallow in the Darkness (

Ups and Downs (

Identity Crisis (

Identity crisis (


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.

6. Rosa Parks

7. John Hope Franklin

8. Benjamin O. Davis

9.Frederick Douglass

10.Charles Drew

11.Bill Cosby

12.Alex Haley

13.James Weldon Johnson

14.Malcolm X

15.Sidney Poitier

16.Oprah Winfrey

17. Paul Laurence Dunbar

18. Maya Angelou

19. Langston Hughes

20. Nikki Giovanni

21. Marian Anderson


About living4bliss

Mental Health Food is the place to stop to get your bliss on everyday. I give tips, hints and sometimes a little silliness to help you navigate the challenges of life. We have a great community of positive bloggers that keep the bliss going all day every day. Make sure to visit their blogs, too. Mental Health Food is a product of Believing Life Is Setup for Success, Inc. (B.L.I.S.S.) in Thornton, CO. We have been in the business of teaching success since 1991. We provide workshops, consulting services and now videos that help people just like you start and maintain successful businesses and personal lives using what you already have. Enjoy a daily dose of Mental Health Food; nourishment for the mind.

2 responses »

  1. Great suggestions! Even as we are evolving it’s important to be true to our Who. Sometimes the crisis helps us better define it.

  2. I’m no doctor, but I’d bet that most depression and anxiety sufferers are victims of identity crises. They don’t know themselves; too busy TRYING to be what others want them to be. I hope some of them will read this post and be inspired!! Great job, Saundra!!

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