We often define ourselves by labels, rules, and narratives ingrained in us from various sources. However, what if shedding these layers of identity could reveal a more authentic version of ourselves? Unbecoming isn’t about discarding everything; it’s about unraveling the layers to let the real you emerge.
The Triangle of Identity-
Labels: Our identities are often made up of labels, both self-imposed and assigned by others. These labels can include roles like parent, friend, and professional, but also include traits like “perfectionist” or “introvert.” They shape how we perceive ourselves and how others see us.
Rules: Society, family, and institutions impose rules dictating how we should behave, look, or conform. These rules are often unspoken but deeply embedded, from gender norms to societal expectations. Questioning these rules is critical to freeing ourselves from their constraints.
Narratives: Narratives are two-fold. They are beliefs you have about yourself and who you are. The other part of the narrative is your beliefs about the world. Narratives dictate our self-worth, fears, and perceived limitations. Recognizing and challenging these narratives can redefine our self-perception.
Here’s what makes up your triangle. You’re in the middle, and that’s the cage, the center of unbecoming.
When you look at all three, that cage is perfect for the results you have in your life today; the cage is the system that has kept you safe. The cage has kept your identity alive.
Most of these things are your coping mechanisms. They are outgrown and over-identified, so what we’re doing when we’re unbecoming is looking at all of it and trying just to open it a little bit, then a little more, and then a little more.
Opening the cage is not about discarding everything but gradually challenging your notions. Start by questioning beliefs, exploring unconventional ideas, and being open to new perspectives.
Reactive thinking often keeps us trapped. Embrace the courage to challenge the status quo and welcome new ideas without judgment. As we challenge these layers, the authentic self begins to emerge. This is the core of who we are, free from the need for external validation or conformity.
Remember: Unbecoming is a journey, not a destination. It’s a process of self-discovery, allowing the true essence of who we are to shine through. To learn more about the unbecoming journey, check out my book Break Free from Your Dirty Little Secrets: A New You in 10 Secret-Breaking Stages.