Let me begin by talking about this – what is an identity crisis?
A term coined by Erik Ericson, it’s what people used to call a mid-life crisis a couple of years ago. But now, it has increasingly been happening with younger adults, between their 20’s and early 30’s.
So many people are going to great lengths to ‘be different’. Hoping that by being different so audaciously, they may find their true Self.
Many times, it stems from the realisation that maybe, life isn’t about this job, or revolving around certain people. It perhaps isn’t about working hard and partying hard. It isn’t what I am doing – but then, what SHOULD I be doing?
The need to understand who we are, and what we’re here to do, can spiral us downwards and lead us into the Dark Night of the Soul, a phenomenon I talked about when I first started this blog.
And if you ask this question to any revered saint or spiritual teacher, he’ll tell you one thing – DETACH yourself.
How can you let go of your job, your family, money etc?
How can you let go of the very things that define you?
It seems insane at first. I know because it’s been years working on this. I even talked about why we find it difficult to detach ourselves, from a modern lens.
However, today I want to talk about how to detach ourselves, using this technique I’ve been trying on myself too.
I’m not a monk or anything of course, but an analogy came to me when I began to reflect on detachment in meditation. So now, whenever I am flustered by these identity crisis related thoughts, I visualize the Anchor. And it helps!
Let’s look at it with my cute stick men.
Is Your Awareness Leading You AWAY From Peace?
We all have an anchor within us. It is our awareness, which we bring to different areas of life, as those areas interest us. As our awareness begins to go back to those things over and over again, we begin to identify with them intensely.
And simply put, every time our awareness is forced away, challenged by an external cause, that identity crisis resurfaces.
But why are we this way in the first place?
Because of society, we’re led to believe that our awareness should be on external things in order to be happy. And yet, some of the richest people in the world can confirm that happiness doesn’t come from riches or relationships.
Happiness is an inside job. Through the following set of questions, let’s reflect on where our anchor is, where our awareness is going towards. And in what way are we pursuing happiness (or subconsciously running away from it).
#1 – IS YOUR ANCHOR IN YOUR RELATIONSHIPS?
If it is on another person, you will eventually be disappointed when the nature of the relationship will change. So many relationships end with the feeling of being the one that has loved too much. Are you one of those people?
#2 – IS IT ON A FUTURE MILESTONE?
If it is on a goal, you will feel an identity crisis as soon as you have achieved that goal. “Now what?”, you’ll wonder until you hop onto the next one to comfort this growing inner turmoil.
#3 – IS IT ON SOME ‘THING’?
If it is a materialistic pleasure, it will soon cease to please you.
Identity Crisis NO MORE
If your anchor, your awareness is within yourself, it will never fail you. Because as long as YOU are here and you are anchored within your being, no matter what the changes around you, you will be unshakeable.
After all, as the saying goes, that which can be taken away from me, isn’t mine.
When we strip down from all these shackles and personalities, what is left, is actually a paradox.
As one of my spiritual teachers says, we cannot find peace, as long as we are pursuing position, possession or pleasure.
So when we are no longer ‘limited’ by these things, we are everything! One step closer to finding the Universe within ourselves, eh?
I know my little stick men aren’t the most beautiful to visualize, but hey! Perhaps when you close your eyes and envision your anchor, they will come to you in their imperfect, silly way and bring you both clarity and smiles.
Once you’ve visualized and brought the anchor, your awareness, back to yourself, everything will be at ease once again. Your identity crisis will quieten and you will be able to see the bigger picture.
Yes – it all always adds up. And until it doesn’t just keep going deeper and deeper within.
Happy healing, dear one!
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“I know my little stick men aren’t the most beautiful to visualize, but hey!”
No, they’re perfect, the most beautiful drawings used for analogies. It’s quite a paradox. The lesser you try to explain something, the easier it gets to understand. The mind goes like,” that’s me! I can do this! ” and anchors analogy is similar to the chords which have the smiliar purpose. To help you connect with You, despite where your chords/anchors have been to previously.
Include stickmen more, thanks 🙂
Thank you for a thought-provoking and kind comment 💜
What a great read. At 50, I just came out of my identity crisis and this was the answer and what I’ve based my new business on! Self-love for the win!
Woohoo! More power to you, Christine!
Adventures with Shelby says
This is an interesting way to think about your identity
I’m glad it evoked some thoughts! Thank you!
Ch. Nikhila says
Fantastic read. Thanks for sharing!
Glad you enjoyed 😊
Mila R says
Well, identity crisis is just because we do not live in present moment anymore.
Yes, the root of all problems is lack of present moment awareness!
Shoppers Gossip says
Good read! I agreed..Life is nothing without self-love and understanding. Thank you for the share.
It’s very interesting that the identity crisis is touching young adults. I agree with it. I’m a millennial and sometimes I have no idea of what I’m doing. – Simplybriee.com
Aw, bless. It’s a growing epidemic of sorts, eh!
This is a good read and I enjoyed your illustrations. You hit the point!
Thank you! 🙌😊
Very thought-provoking. As a trailing spouse, I wonder if i lost my identity. We moved a lot based on my husband’s job. So I adjust depending on the location, whatever job I can find there, etc. Now I wonder, what my anchor really is.
Aw, thank you for sharing this about yourself. There’s always room for making small but lasting changes 🤗
I never thought where I place my “anchor” at. Maybe I never have placed it on something or someplace for a long time.
Hmm.. hope this inspired a new thought for you!
Polly Amora says
Everyone goes though identity crisis sometime in their life and I think mine was when I was 24. I had a hard time figuring out what I truly want in life – relationship, career, personal – it took me a lot of thinking, exploring options and opportunities until I finally found things that I want to pursue. It was overwhelming! But little by little, I got a hang of things and finally I can say I’ve somewhat surpassed this stage, then again, life is a never ending endeavor right?
I think your anchor theory is amazing and it explains what you’re trying to convey perfectly. Also your stick figures are adorable! ❤
Woohoo, more power to you, Polly! It’s taken me a few hiccups myself. I’m so glad you enjoyed my silly guys 😊 I hope that people going through this situation will remember the drawings and re-anchor within themselves, with a smile!
Love your post thanks for an interesting read.
I’m glad you enjoyed this. Thanks for visiting!
Mira - The Handy Journal says
great illustration! In my opinion, Our true identity resides in what makes us happy, whether it was a job, relationship…! Great post, thanks for sharing !
In a sense that’s true, but if we attach ourselves to something impermanent, we can feel overwhelmed when that thing is no longer happening the way it used to. Being more anchored within ourselves whole enjoying the outside world is a more guaranteed way to stay unshakable 💕
Ellen Mika Zelasko says
The advice you give here is great! Life is nothing without self love and understanding. And I liked the stick men! Super cute.
Thank you Ellen, so glad there little guys made you smile. Indeed, once we show up for ourselves, there’s no turning back and there’s no waivering! 🙂
Simon Starchevsky says
Excellent way of thinking about the center of yourself. While it is important to have goals, it is more important to first focus on self and attain mental clarity and calm.
Absolutely Simon, it’s all about our connection with ourselves that’s permanent. Everything in time will reveal it’s impermanence and shake us if we aren’t anchored within. 💕
Love the stick men! Thanks for sharing
Glad you enjoyed this post 😊
lol! this little stick man has anchors tethered all around him!
Nicole Anderson says
How cool are the stick people being used to help with the point here. Good thought-provoking post which challenges all us readers to consider where our own anchor should be. Of course, that answer differs for everyone and will change as we develop throughout the course of living our lives.
Absolutely! Well said. Ultimately being able to place the anchor within ourselves, we can ride through each phase without being as shaken. ⭐
Will have to share this with friends, a totally worth reading, i bookmarked your site for future reading.
Thank you! I’m so glad you enjoyed the post and I look forward to hearing back from you in the future! 🙂
Katy Liang says
Haha I love the stick men illustrations! I can definitely relate to that downward spiral and grappling with identity issues. Thanks for the tips!
Aww, it’s a bittersweet experience eh? I hope this analogy comes to people’s minds if ever they feel the same way! 💕
Zandra Castillo says
I place my hope with Jehovah God. He will never leave us or disappoint us.
That’s beautiful! To each their own faith. 💕