What you repeat becomes who you are. You create yourself by your choices. What are you focusing on within your own experience of yourself? What is your relationship like with yourself? How we understand who we are is fundamentally our internal sense of identity: “I am not a morning person. I like dogs. I am good at swimming….” These identifications are reinforced when we see evidence that they are true, and they also strongly influence our choices and our behavior.
If we want to make changes, improve our lives, we can interfere with those identifications we cling to, and we can free ourselves to leave our comfort zones. We don’t need to “think positive” or force ourselves to believe things we don’t believe about ourselves. We simply need to allow there to be some uncertainty about who we are and what we can do. We can recognize that we are constantly changing and growing, learning how to live our lives better, and moving through different circumstances.
People sometimes talk about goals as a direction we can aim for. And some types of wishes lend themselves to goal setting, such as running a marathon. But if we look back at the last five years, we can see that we have done a lot that wasn’t in response to goals. We continue to grow even when we are not forcing that growth. Because life teaches us lessons, like it or not. Sometimes it helps to take stock of how much wiser, or better, we are than we were 5 years ago. We can see there is some kind of direction, even when we were not exactly directing it.
Every choice we make is based in some definition of who we think we are. At the same time, that choice reinforces that definition. Like everything, we get better at being who we are through practice. If we can allow ourselves freedom of choice about who we are, we can practice being the person that represents our best version of ourselves.