Sometimes I’ll get compliments like, “You’re so organized!” At these times, I’ll often respond by saying, “Thanks! That’s true, I am—except when I’m not!” That’s because I try not to think of myself as being any particular thing—responsible, irresponsible, loving, hateful, or whatever.
In my experience, when I get invested in a particular idea about how I am, a lot of my energy starts going into defending that belief. That’s especially true at times when my actions don’t match my beliefs. For example, if I’m invested in the belief that I’m responsible, I’ll probably have a hard time seeing and acknowledging any inconsiderate or uncaring actions I might take.
For this reason, I aspire to give myself permission to be anything at any time. That doesn’t mean anything goes; it means I want to be free to clearly see myself as I am in each moment—with full acceptance of myself as a person, and full clarity about how my actions are affecting myself and others. I don’t want my attachment to beliefs about myself to get in the way of that clarity.
Photo (by Nagesh Jayaraman) is used under a Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license.