Ep34: Identity and Defining Who You Are

In this episode you are encouraged to define who you are by discovering the identities that you have, and who you are underneath them.

Episode Transcript
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Episode Transcript

Note: The podcast is not scripted and is transcribed using software. The transcript is nearly verbatim but may not be exact. It may include edits for ease of reading and/or minor grammatical errors.


Welcome to I Can, I Am, I Will. The world’s #1 podcast for confidence and self-empowerment. Today we’re going to talk about identity and how, when you identify yourself, you will become closer to your natural being. Which is going to help you build your confidence and feel empowered.

For those of you who are new here, my name is Lyndsey. I am a confident and self-empowerment coach. And here we discuss how you can build your confidence and feel empowered with topics and different activities that I used to build my confidence.

It worked so now we’re going to make it work for you!

Before we dive in, you can find transcripts of episodes an also previous episodes and worksheets on my website at www.canamwill.com. You can also reach out to me to request topics for podcasts, or just to say hi, tell me how awesome you think that I am, at canamwill@gmail.com.

Also before we begin, make sure to like and subscribe so you get updated on future episodes.

Identity and Self

In regards to identity, I’m going to reference an ideology that I read in a book by a very wonderful man. His name was Ram Dass and the book was called “How Can I Help?”.

Ram Dass went to India and he came back a changed man. He’s an American who was working on the Stock Exchange. He went to India, and he started studying under a guru, and he came back changed as a human being—spiritually everything.

There is actually a Netflix documentary that I want to watch about him. Unfortunately, he passed away in December of 2019. He’s very brilliant man and he wrote a very popular book called “Be Here Now”.

I went to the library to take out a copy. They did not have it, but they had a book called “How Can I help?”

I saw this book and I thought, “no, I don’t know about that”. But I got it because I wanted to read him and it was a wonderful, wonderful book. It became one of my favorite books. I actually returned the library book and then bought a copy of the book so I could have it myself. And then I read it again.

I call those like a failed—a failed library book. They have failed fosters for when people foster an animal and they end up keeping the animal. I have failed library books. And this was one of them. It is a wonderful, wonderful book. I highly recommend it.  

The book is about doing social work. So the book is about doing service for others. However, Ram Dass talks a lot about doing inner work and finding out who you are before you can help others.

Because sometimes people help others out of feeling guilt. Or they help others out of feeling shame for not being as helpful as they think they can be. And that feeling, and that mind frame influences the relationship between the person who is helping and the person who is being helped.

So instead of having two human beings working together, it becomes the helper and the person being helped. It creates a different dynamic.

Having Multiple Identities

In the book Ram Dass talks about making sure to have your identity and understand who you are. And if you see yourself as a person—as a being who is simply trying to help another being because you relate with that person on basic level if you are related to on a humanistic level—then you will be able to give more of yourself.

Other people will be more accepting, and then you will be able to help induce more positive change. Not only for yourself, but for the other person. An in “How Can I Help?” Ram Dass talks about—and I hope I’m saying his name right—he talks about identity and how we have a lot of different identities.

So if you think about it, who is the “I”? Who are you?

When you’re at work, when you’re talking to your manager, there’s one identity—that you’re the employee. But if you’re at work and you’re talking to your manager, and then you go and you talk to someone that you’re managing, then you change from being employee to boss.

And say that you’re giving someone a review you’re their manager. And you’re giving them a review, and then your child calls an they got in trouble at school, they were being bad.

Then you are the authoritative parent. But if your child calls, or like a nurse at school calls, and your child is sick, then you are the compassionate and worried parent. So there are all different identities that you have all throughout your life.

And people will see you through these identities. So when I was working at a Fortune 500 I was seeing as the expert in European data privacy law. When I’m talking on this podcast I’m seeing as someone who wants to help you build your confidence in your self-empowerment.

It’s a different identity.

What we need to do is acknowledge that we have all of those identities. However those identities do not define us. And I talked yesterday about external narratives and how sometimes if we’re not comfortable with who we are, we can allow other people to define us.

We can take in external narratives, and they can negatively affect us. So what we need to do is to identify who we are. And how we do that is by identifying our current “identities” in our world—in our life.

What are Your Identities?

So what are your identities? Think about that. What are all of the identities that you have? There are probably so many more than you’re actually going to come up with. So just come up with a list, but then continue to think about it.

Let that marinate. You don’t have to do everything right away. It could be in a week, you could be in the shower, and you can realize, “wow that’s another one”.

I know that people want to get things done right away—believe me I totally get it—but another part of being confident, and feeling empowered is knowing that you can, you are, you will. Remember, I can, I am, I will.

And you will get this down. You will figure out your identities. There is no timeline on here. There’s a saying, “a lot of people overestimate what they can do in a day, and underestimate what they can do in a year, or in a week, or in a month, or in a decade”.

So allow yourself to have some time to let that marinate and try and figure out who you are—how do you identify.

The people next door to you, you’re their neighbor. I don’t know if you go to like a bar regularly, or if you go somewhere for like lunch, then you are the return friendly customer who loves the grilled cheese.

Example from “Jane the Virgin”

Has anyone seen the TV show Jane the Virgin? This is actually a really good example here. So for those of you who have not seen it I’m going to give a spoiler alert.

Jane is a virgin, and then she loses her virginity during the show. Like while the show is going on. And in the beginning of the show, the beginning credits, it says Jane the “Virgin”. And then after she loses her virginity, it says Jane the Virgin, and then it crosses it out and talks about what she’s doing in that episode.

So in one episode she’s a ghost writer. In one episode she is a worried mother. In another episode she is a like disgruntled worker. And there’s all these different identities that she has.

I wonder if I could find the list somewhere if I can find it I’m going to put it with the transcript for this episode so you can see all of the identities that she has.

And you take on all these identities. So the idea is to figure out they are. Working backwards here. So the idea here is to figure out your identity, how you identify, and then from there you can backtrack and see who you are with and all of these identities.

Finding Your True Self

Because even though in one situation you can be the concerned mother, or you could be the authority parent, or you could be the boss, or the employee, or this, or that. Who are you underneath all of that, when you find that, then you are finding your true self. And when you find your true self, you can feel empowered.

So for me, who am I under all that? I’m a compassionate and caring person no matter what situation I’m in (or how I am identifying), because it makes me feel good. I like that I learned that about myself. That’s something I am, I’m also empathetic, I’m sensitive, I’m intelligent. That’s who I am in any of these situations—no matter how I am identifying.

And I mean, those are the good ones. I’m also kind of stubborn —working on it, working on it— and I can be hard headed that’s who I am that is that’s that’s me as my being, and that is what I’m working on.

So that’s my homework for you today. I hope that this was helpful.

In the coming episodes I’m going to share a little bit about myself, and my story, and how I got to be here with you. So we’re going to end with are “I” affirming statements.

You can say them with me now, you cannot, you can do whatever you want. Are you ready?

I can,

I am,

 I will.

Have a great day.

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