“The value of identity of course is that so often with it comes purpose” – Richard R. Grant
Your identity is so much more than your appearance. Your true identity is the depth of who you are as an individual. And what so many don’t seem to accept is the concept that our identity is intended to be found in our fathers. But what happens when our father is absent? When he has abandoned us and our mother’s to fend for ourselves in every way? Many have what has been coined as an identity crisis!!!
The term “Identity Crisis” was coined by Erik Erikson. His definition of the term is, “the failure to achieve ego identity during adolescence.” Erikson also states, “During our adolescence we are faced with physical growth, sexual maturation, and integrating our ideas of ourselves and about what others think of us. We therefore form our self-image and endure the task of resolving the crisis of our basic ego identity.”
They say when you grasp a strong sense of identity in your adolescence you are well equipped and prepared for adulthood, possessing a strong sence of confidence and certainty. But what happens when this doesn’t happen? It opens the door for insecurity, lack of self-worth, unbelief, mistrust, abandonment and a list of many other negatives ideologies leading us on a uncertain path in life. Erikson even believes an identity crisis negates the mechanism for fidelity: known to encompass sincerity, genuineness and a sense of duty in our relationships with other people!
Through my work with The Fatherless Generation Foundation Inc. I have learned the importance of identity and how it is connected to the fatherless and their inability to navigate through life as well as finding their purpose successfully. Not to say the fatherless cannot find success, but their navigation at times is off balance due to an uncalibrated compass. The compass of life is a tool both parents play a significant role in building and then calibrating. And when your compass is only built and calibrated by one parent, your compass is one sided and leads you in circles. Erikson states, “They may go on to seek a negative identity, which may involve crime or drugs or the inability to make defining choices about the future.” A life that leads you in circles is what we readily call “Repeating the Cycle!”
The real question is how do you overcome your identity crisis if you are having one? How do you break the cycle and get off the “Merry Go Round?” The clear answer is… FIND YOUR IDENTITY and when you find your identity it will lead you to your purpose!
Some steps to finding your identity….
- Find Your Authentic Self by Listening to Your Gut: This requires silence and you learning to trust yourself
- Never Lose Track of Your Goals & Dreams: No dream is foolish. Put goals in place so your dream can be accomplished
- Express Your True Feelings… Stop Surpressing How You Truly Feel: You can’t tell everyone everything so learn to journal
- Learn to Say NO without Feeling Guilty or Ashamed: Guilt and Shame are intended to keep you on the Merry Go Round
- Learn to Take Risks: Calculated Risks ONLY
When you crack your identity code…. the contours of your life will shift!