Each of us clings to a dopey little identity that gives us some kind of certainty.
It’s one of the many things that separate us from the animal kingdom.
But the joke’s on us. Because it’s just a concept. A costume that we put it on or take it off whenever we want.
I remember reading this passage from a fascinating book about sex addiction recovery that said it best.
Identity is not something given, once and for all. And perhaps there is never a fixed point at which we can say, I am that. Life is process, upheaval, reversal, change and a continuous process of becoming. And if we are brave enough to welcome change and the pains it can cause, we may never have to fear the vertigo of nothingness.
It’s a sobering reminder that there are no guarantees that things will stay the same for long. We may as well beat the news home. We may as well get out ahead of the change before it knocks us out cold.
And so, here are a few of my favorite calls to action for this very practice. Think of them as a to do list for taming the ego.
Be prepared to abandon your beliefs at any moment.
Be ready to throw out the old thoughts without regret or nostalgia.
Be willing to let go of your ways of coping that no longer work.
Be eager to surrender the parts of your old life that don’t fit you anymore.
Be willing to part with our present opinions.
Be ready to ready to trade in the understandings you’ve outgrown.
Be willing to let the anticipation of your changing ideas excite you.
Be on the lookout for experiences that push you beyond our former selves.
Remember, you are not obliged to keep certain habits and values and behaviors, just because you’ve had them for so long.
Identity is only a story. A convenient excuse to hold onto parts of yourself that you have outgrown.
LET ME ASK YA THIS…
Are you brave enough to welcome change and the pains it can cause?
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That Guy with the Nametag
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