"Grow Wise, Grow Happy," get organized, simplify, get motivated, increase productivity, accomplish goals, get healthy, raise happy kids, find your authentic self, improve your relationships, achieve success...

Kristen's Guide Update: New health and wellness articles and lots of new printables will posted at All Together Wellness at AllTogetherWellness.com, Kristen's new site focused on mental and physical health and well-being.

"Who Am I?": Life Roles and Figuring Out Who You Are

By Kristen
Content Updated on February 21, 2010

Who are you? Ask people this question, and they often give you answers that include lists of roles they play. "I'm a mom, a dad, a teacher, a truck driver, a kid, etc." But those things aren't who you are. They're what you do. They are the roles you play in life.

What Is a Life Role?

Imagine that you are an actor. In one movie, you may play a dedicated carpenter following the American dream. In another movie, you may play grumpy police officer looking for love. In a long television series, you may play a the goofy cousin who makes everyone laugh. In a short commercial, you might play a stressed out employee picking up the phone to call a a local school to start on your path to a new career. You may even play an extra, somebody who walks around in the background of a scene, going about their day but never getting a chance to say any lines to get attention from the audience.

In every production, big or small, you, the actor, play a character, and if done well, your audience will believe your performance so much that they might actually think of you as that character every time they see your face. But the roles you play aren't who you really are. In reality, you are the actor, not the characters.

Life is a play, and you are the starring actor. Every person has many roles to play in life. Sometimes we play roles simultaneously. Other times we must cease playing one or more roles to start the next one. Sometimes we get to choose our roles along with our purposes; sometimes we don't.

Permanent Roles

Some roles are permanent. You'll always be a member of the human race (at least during your life and in memory after you die). Once you're a parent, you'll always be a parent even if your children grow up and move away or die. You'll always be a son or daughter even if your parents die. You'll always be a brother or sister if you have siblings, even if your siblings die. You'll always be a learner.

Temporary Roles

Some roles are temporary. You may always be a parent, but you won't always be a caregiver. Sometimes you will need to be cared for. Your job descriptions will change. Sometimes you'll be a student, and sometimes you'll be a teacher. Even the hobbies you use to define yourself, such as "I'm a quilter" or "I'm a woodworker" will change as your interests change.

Conflicts and Transitions

Conflicts occur when we take on a role that we don't want to have. Sometimes these are roles we have chosen, but other times they are roles that are placed upon us without our permission.

We may choose the role of a banker and hate it. This is a conflicting role that we can change. In such cases, we should make every effort to change these roles, so we can find fulfillment. It can be difficult to initiate our own transition from one role to the next because we all have a bit of a fear of the unknown, but it is essential for our happiness.

Other roles we have no power to control. We can't control losing a loved one because we can't bring them back. We can't be a surgeon (at least in the traditional sense) if our arms are amputated in an accident. In such cases, we must learn to transition.

Transitioning from one role to the next can cause us to feel like we've lost our significance. This happens when we place too much value on one role. You'll never stop feeling a sense of loss, but that doesn't mean that you have to spend your life in mourning and depression. Letting go of our fantasies and expectations is always heartbreaking, but you can close that chapter of your life, let go of it, and move forward. You can find hope and even happiness in a new role, and it too is significant.

Scroll down to comment on this article.

Related Items

Similar topics

See other Kristen's Guide topics in this category.

----------

If you like this page, please share it with your friends.

Get Kristen's Guide Updates XML via Feed | via Email | via Facebook | via Twitter


All content written by Kristen

2002-2012 All rights reserved.

TM Kristen's Guide , "Grow Wise, Grow Happy!", and the Kristen's Guide flower logo are trademarks of the Kristen Company. Trademarks may be registered in some jurisdictions and may not be used without written permission. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

DO NOT distribute without explicit written permission. Request Permission to Reprint an Article or Printable

Information on Kristen's Guide: http://www.kristensguide.com is an expression of personal opinion intended for educational and entertainment purposes and is not a substitute for services from a licensed professional. By accessing this website or using the information from this website in any way, you are agreeing to the terms of the User Agreement at http://www.kristensguide.com/user_agreement.asp.

Search
Custom Search

Get Updates XML via Feed
via Email
via Facebook

Free Tools Free Printables
Free Calculators

Guides to Finding Happiness

Managing Your Home
Getting Organized

Family & Parenting
Genealogy

Etiquette & Courtesy
Travel

Computers
Website Design
Writing

Kristen's Picks Alex Haddox Personal Protection

About KG

What is Kristen's Guide?

Reprint an Article/Printable
Organizations that Reprinted Articles/Printables

Testimonials
User Agreement & Privacy Policy
Contact Info

Spread the Love If you like this page, please share it with your friends.

Latest Updates

New Planners, Calendars, and Other Printables Will Be Posted on All Together Wellness

Requests Requested Please! Tell me what printables you want and need

A new home for Kristen's Guide content about health, wellness, and life skills

Spring is Coming! Get your running shoes. How to Start Jogging / Running.

Waist to Height Ratio Fixed on the Weightloss Profile Calculator


See All Updates


Stay Updated...

XML via Feed
via Email
via Facebook

Most Talked About


Stay Updated...

XML via Feed
via Email
via Facebook

Get
Kristen's Guide
Updates

XML via Feed
via Email
via Facebook

Get
Kristen's Guide
Updates

XML via Feed
via Email
via Facebook