What defines you…

I’ve been thinking about this a lot lately – what defines a person. More importantly, what do you want to be defined as when people think of you? Maybe I’ve been thinking about this lately because of the crazy amount of self-definition that has been going on in the social media. People labeled as hate-mongers, liberals, conservatives, Christians, atheists, hypocrites, hippies, ignorant, etc. People who are happy to be labeled those things, and others who are not.

Then again, maybe I’ve been thinking about this a lot lately because I’m not sure what defines me anymore. For so long my identity was the overzealous full-time student and full-time employee with the “big girl job.” That zeal has changed and it’s become less. I just took 18 hours in the summer, and I’m taking 18 hours this fall, as well as 12 this Spring in order to graduate – but the complication comes in that I’m not sure if this is what defines me anymore. It feels more or less – typical? Perhaps it’s because I’m erring on the side of non-typical. I didn’t get the traditional college life – hell, I’m graduating with my undergrad at the age of 27. Not exactly the arm moving, fist pumping “hoorah!” that is usually accompanied with graduation. Maybe it’s because I’m on break right now and I get to sleep in every morning, wake up, drink coffee and then decide what direction I want to go in for the day. That sounds great, right? Honestly, when I was quitting my job back in April that sounded like the mothering jack-pot of angels singing and glimmer rain shinning down around my bed as I woke up at 10:30 every morning so refreshed. And for when that happened, it was like that – for a few days.

It’s just now I think about how I could be at work, and doing things for my patients. Or working in general, and bringing in money to make this journey a little easier on myself. Or I could be getting up and studying Spanish every day, because I hate Spanish, and my learning a second language absolutely sucks, but then it’s like I get this blanketed feeling of “meh” and I go run or throw.

I just don’t know what defines me anymore. For the first time I understand what time does in a person’s life – it makes you bored. And I realized how much I hate boredom. And more than anything, for the first time in my life I absolutely realize how unbelievably busy I was with full-time work and school, and have started to understand that it was almost like a high. Being that busy kept me going. I need busy.  I need something.

So here it is – I come back to this question – “What Defines you?” And more importantly, what do you want others to define you as when they think about you, or tell someone about who you are? In high school, I had a friend Alisa who told her friend Alaina, “This is my friend, Sam. Don’t piss her off – it’s not good to be on her bad side.” In my office, someone introduced me to a new employee as, “This is Sam. If you can’t figure it out, she can.” Now I just feel like I don’t have that anymore. And I don’t know what I want to define myself as and I have a hard time thinking about what others would have to say in that regard.

I’m just going to go and play some ultimate – that always makes me happy.

8 thoughts on “What defines you…

  1. First, I would offer this: You can’t control how others define you, no matter how much
    you’d like to. Further, it’s probably not be worth the effort pondering how they perceive you. No matter what you do, some people will find a reason to not like you, others will misinterpret your actions, either willfully or innocently, etc. And no one will fully understand you better than yourself, provided you’re honest with yourself and your motivations.

    Second, do you need to specifically define yourself? It sounds to me like you’re someone who is working to improve themselves instead of taking the path of least resistance by staying with what was a decent but ultimately unfulfilling job. You may not have any inkling of where you’ll end up – most of us don’t – but that doesn’t mean you’re not accomplishing things and makng progress. You’ve simply diverged from the beaten path, which might be why you’re having a hard time defining yourself. Not everything or everyone fits into a near definition.

    If you must define yourself, consider this: you’re someone unwilling to settle for the status quo and is willing to work to better themselves. A work in progress, as we all are.

    • I really, really love this, and I really appreciate the comment.
      I feel like you said a lot of great things, and I feel like I took a lot away from your thoughts.

      Thank you 🙂

      • The way I look at, there’s got to be something better in store after some of the b.s. I’ve had to endure, if in by sheer luck. I think the saying is: Even a blind hog finds an acorn once in a while.

        On a more serious note, perhaps tough times our put in our path to help us appreciate the blessings we’ve been given, and to also help others who may not have the strength to endure without a boost from a friend or loved one.

        I can guarantee you that everyone in this world goes through hardships and no one’s life goes according to how they thought it would. I would never want to relive some of the past few years, but I also wouldn’t want to throw away the lessons gleaned during those times, either.

      • 🙂 Sometimes I feel people like you and I, who are equipped to deal with the B.S., do so because we are stronger people. What’s that saying – “Give your project to the busiest person in the office, because they will get it done for you”? I think this is true in life, too. Mainly that we are stronger, we’ve been through more, and know how to hold that world on our shoulders.

        Sometimes I just catch myself saying “when do I get my break.”

  2. I just happened to come across your blog, and I can completely relate to you. I’ve always been the one who is introduced as “Sarah, the quiet one”. Not exactly the most flattering description. Yet it seems like no matter what I do or where I go, I can’t change that. Sometimes, it’s really easy to slip into other people’s definition, but that only ends up bringing you down in the end. My piece of advice would be that you know who you are–don’t worry about everyone else. Just be you. 🙂

    • Hi Sarah, my opposite! I’ve always been very intrigued by “the quiet ones” – I feel that they usually have more to say after you get to know them. I’ve always been the “really loud one” – but I contribute that to my Italian heritage and excessively large family.

      Thanks for stopping in, and I’ll do just that – I’ll just be me 🙂

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