If you’re asked to introduce yourself, how do you begin?
Maybe with your name? “Hello I’m Steve.”
Our name is the most natural representation of our identity. Since our earliest years it has defined us. Differentiated us from siblings, classmates, friends.
But how do you proceed then? After your name?
Maybe with your job role, or where you come from, or some details about your partner or family? What follows your name is probably context sensitive, but in many situations, when encouraged to say a little more, we might provide all of these details.
But does this describe who you are?
We seem more comfortable to offer up what we do, our employment, career, profession, job title, hobbies. We offer up where we come from, who else is in our lives, maybe our age… in other words our context.
Why do we find it more difficult to describe who we are as a human being?
I wonder if it is in part because that is more personal, more exposing, riskier? Maybe we are embarrassed to reveal our innermost selves? Possibly. But I wonder if it is more because many of us have been given little opportunity to explore and understand who we are?
What drives and motivates you? What do you value highly? What words, actions, behaviours give you a good feeling, and which have the opposite effect? What gifts do you possess? What do you believe to be true about the world, about your place in it – those unwritten rules that determine how you are judged, valued, belong? What excites you in life? What will your legacy to the world be?
Maybe it’s time to start understanding yourself?
Then you can introduce yourself.
Then people can truly meet you.
And you them.