Thursday, August 8, 2013

Does Your Profile Define You?

When asked for a basic introduction of ourselves most of us will include things like our age, our employment, and our families. If you have a chronic illness chances are you will include it in your description. Why is that? Why do we talk about the things we do, rather than who we are? I challenge you to inspect the introduction of yourself. After all, you say it so often you begin to believe it.

Before my diagnosis, I would have explained myself as a 30-something travel agent with one son. However, I was not a travel agent; that was what I did. I would never have explained that I was a cheerful person who loves socializing and that I'm outspoken, resilient, spiritual and loving. The things I would never have said are more truthful than just giving my age, occupation and family status. So I'm not sure why we choose to lead with benign details things rather than the truth about who we are. It could be that some of us don't want to admit our own truths. I believe that we need to be well acquainted with the deepest, darkest parts of our truths so that we are able to effectively wield them when life becomes challenging. 

It's like when you meet someone online and they casually ask 'ASL?' Truthfully, what does that say about who I am? Nothing. I am just another 40-something girl living a typical American life in small town Oklahoma. The things you want to truly know about this new spirit you are connecting with via the internet you can only know by connecting with them over time. You want to know if they are honest, kind, and have similar interests. After all, those are the things that really matter when you're chatting up someone online. Imagine if someone laid out their negatives in such a positive way that you are comforted by them, instead of questioning their motives. 

Take a look at your bio on your social media profiles. Do they give an honest picture of who you really are or does it portray a picture of who you want people to think you are? My Twitter Profile, for instance, says "Chiari Protagonist, Blogger Unrenowned, Unabashed Realist, Beauty Votary, Filipino Devotee, Idiosyncratic Okie." This is actually a pretty accurate description of me of course I could continue to expand upon it with things like "Merriment Activist, Acceptant Unconcerned, Impatient Spiritualist, Cathartic Poet, Opinionist Forthright, Inquisitive Blissologist."  Yes, I just make up my own words; I'm allowed. After all, years ago who knew what googling was? Does your profile truly define who you are? Probably not. It's time we start truly defining ourselves truthfully both to ourselves and to everyone else. 

I challenge you to delve deep and find a description of yourself that doesn't involve benign details but really talks about who you are at the crux of your being. So often we see certain characteristics as negative. We need to remember that there are truly no negative characteristics, only negative uses of characteristics. We are not doomed by our traits; we are blessed by them. Take the negative things you don't like about yourself and morph them into something useful. If you're impatient, then inspire people into action.If you're opinionated, then motivate others to be passionate for the right reasons. Start with your profiles; then keep the momentum going and begin to change your life. Happiness doesn't happen to people; people create it in spite of their circumstances. Now, I'm off to change my profiles.