I was journaling the other day, and I wrote out the prompt: Who do I want to be. Immediately, I went to jot down the word, "writer." As if "writer" could encompass the qualities and characteristics that make me Chloe. I paused, then realized how much of myself I define by what I do.
Think about it. You're meeting someone for the first time. What's one of the first questions you ask? "So what do you do?" I don't think that question is just a conversation started. I think it's a judgment tool. Seriously, run a couple of different careers that someone could say in this hypothetical situation and think about how you react to each of them. It's our human nature to rank people based off of what they do as if there aren't people who don't fit the stereotype of their respective job title.
We're inclined to treat others a certain way based off of "what they do." Naturally, we seek to define ourselves with what we do, as well. It's almost like we want people to think highly of us. Imagine that.
Writing is something I love to do, but it's not who I am. I am creative, outspoken and passionate. I like to write because it gives me the space to be all of those things.
When we search for who we are within the confines of what we do, our most authentic selves become sacrificed. In turn, we mold who we are to a title. And how do we arrive at this definition of who we are based off what we do? Probably by comparing ourselves to someone else who holds the same title. We may start to think, "well she is in ministry, so I should be like her" or "he is going to med school, so I need to be like him." God didn't make you be like her or him. You're in the position you're in, with the qualifications you have, for a reason. You bring something to the table that the other person doesn't.
It's so cliche', but you weren't made to be a copy. You are who you are, and you are where you are for a reason. To quote Esther 4:14, "Perhaps you were made for such a time as this." But how would you ever know if you do not release yourself to become you fully and not limit yourself to a title given to you?
Become someone you're proud of. Love who you are. Then, if you're lucky enough, do what you love to do. Find something you're good at, and give your absolute best effort. Look to others for encouragement, but don't be afraid to define it yourself.