Who Are You?

Dr. Linda Hancock 11. The Eleventh Year iStock Self Improvement Self Improvement_And More


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It is interesting to think about how many people do not have a clear sense of who they are.  They depend on the opinions of others who they allow to shape their self-image and determine their behaviours.  Well, there are several different types of people who influence others:

  1. The unnamed – Sometimes people state that they are afraid of a group called “they”. “They might think I am stupid” or “They might not like it if I do this”.  The person who refers to “they” as being authorities is bound by fear of not being accepted by anyone.  But most people can be very self-centered and usually spend very little time thinking about other people because they have their own lives to live.  Even if they are critical, they are likely not the type of friends that one would want to have in the first place.  The world is full of people who all have different opinions.  Look for those who are encouraging and positive!
  2. The controlling – Many people think that they have all the answers and want to run the lives of other people. They write the rules and expect everyone to do things their way.  They allow very little room for individualism or new ideas.  Unfortunately, the controlling can lead to isolation as people usually do not want to be around a dictator!  Do not let anyone trap you into their thinking you have to follow all their ideas or prevent you from being yourself.
  3. The projecting – “Do as I say and not as I do” is a hypocritical way to live life. Sometimes people accuse others about things that they are themselves guilty of doing.  What a person talks about rejecting the most can be the very thing that s/he is doing in secret.  Just because you are being accused of something doesn’t necessarily mean you are guilty.
  4. The heroes – Sometimes a celebrity or a hero is worshipped inappropriately. When you try to model yourself after someone you need to be very, very cautious.  You are likely seeing only a very small part of their character.  You might not like the part that you don’t see – yet!  With time, however, the truth will be revealed.
  5. The “experts” – I learned a long time ago that people can be experts in a certain area but that doesn’t make them an expert of me. Just because they have excellent design skills doesn’t mean that they will make a website or brochure that matches my personality.  Being an expert chef doesn’t mean that I will like the food.  And being a fashion expert doesn’t mean that I will look my best wearing their creations.  Don’t believe that someone knows better than you do about things that involve you.

I often tell my clients that we need to be like jello.  We can’t be warm and just flow into the cracks or places that other people tell us to go.  Instead, we need to be “set” which is a condition that has form as well as flexibility.

It is a good idea to consider other people’s opinions, but you need to adopt your own ideas about who you are.  Don’t just think about what they tell you.  Make a list of all your strengths and dreams.  Be honest about your weaknesses and plan to overcome them.  Allow yourself to be who you are at this time but also design growth experiences to make your future even better.

I believe that you are a wonderful, unique individual who has the potential to be even better tomorrow!  Forgive the past and give thanks for what lies ahead.


Dr. Linda Hancock, the author of “Life is An Adventure…every step of the way” and “Open for Business Success” is a Registered Psychologist who has a private practice in Medicine Hat. She can be reached at 403-529-6877 or through email office@drlindahancock.com



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