You know….if you met me for the first time today at around 4 pm today, you would have thought me some insane football fanatic who had pretty lousy language. If you would have met me just 2 days before that, you’d have considered me a high-maintenance diva. If you would have met me 12 years ago, you might have thought me angry and quiet. If you had met me 14 years ago, you’d think I was ditzy and sad, and definitely not bright.
14 years ago my mom got sick. 5 months later she died. 1 month later was September 11, 2001 which speaks for itself – never mind that I worked in Tower 1 for a few months years ago. 1 month after that my husband was laid off from work. Marci fell apart. Really a person can only take so much before she becomes undone. I bypassed that amount, I thought. I sought help, but I was troubled and unclear, and sad and couldn’t combine thoughts.
My experiences 12 years ago at work were rough. I was asked to do a task that took a piece of me that I can’t get back. I did it and I did it well – which should have given me pride. But it didn’t. So I went through a rough time and if you met me then, that’s what you’d have seen – what I gave you – an angry and troubled person.
Throughout the last 35 years my weight has fluctuated over 50 pounds up and 30 pounds below I am currently. My hair has been all sorts of lengths and colors. My clothing has gone from classic to trendy to a combination.
Over the course of the last 20 years my faith has been challenged and then cemented.
Identity is a funny thing. If you’re asked to describe yourself would you give people physical descriptions, religious beliefs, accomplishments you have, education levels or something else? How we see ourselves is important but it’s equally important to know that it’s not permanent. Today I could identify with a foul-mouthed football fan but tomorrow morning my identity will be prisspot Weight Watcher Leader. I love how we can wear different hats. I love how I couldn’t imagine being a Weight Watcher Leader 20 years ago but as soon as I walked in the door 9 years ago, I wanted to be *her*! I had to do some work first, of course, but hey – I could do that. And to me, that goal of becoming a Weight Watcher Leader became reality and then sometime later, it was no longer a job – it was my identity.
But not my only one. And not the permanent one. I’m a mom, a wife, a daughter, a sister. I’m an employee of two companies. I’m a cook. I’m a cheerleader. I’m a football fan and a bacon lover. I’m the patient one (not always the case!) and the diplomatic one (also not always the case!). I’m the busy one and yet always the person asked to do the extra task. My family and my culture and my faith are included in my identity. I’m also the short one. And the prissy one. I was recently told by a man I highly respect, “You have a great brand, Marci!” I was caught off guard. In the process of finding my happy, I created this brand – this identity.
Creating an identity you want is a process. What do you want to see? How do you define yourself? How do you want to see yourself next year? 5 years? You can change your weight week to week with behavior changes. You can adjust your identity the same way.
What’s the plan?