Over the last few weeks, Joe and I have both been talking a lot about what defines us as individuals. It’s been an interesting, and sometimes uncomfortable, journey as we dig into the deepest parts of our hearts and examine what’s inside. During this difficult time of self discovery, I put together a list in my head of things that do not define me.

I heard someone tell me recently that in order to know who we are and what defines us, we need to understand and articulate what we aren’t. And once we’ve freed our minds from the lies we carry about our identity, we can fill ourselves up with the truth of who we are. I’ve put together a list of what doesn’t define me, and it was incredibly helpful in my journey. If you’ve never thought about what doesn’t define you, I would encourage you to write those things down. Then fill yourself up with the truth about who you are.

1. My worth is not defined by the size of my jeans of the size of the dress I wear. In fact, my worth can never be defined by a number on tag of clothing.

2. My beauty is not defined by how I measure up to those around me. I do not have to be concerned with comparing myself to them.

3. My value is not defined by external things – a successful job, a nice apartment, plenty of clothes, a stocked kitchen – and those things will never satisfy me in the long term.

4. My worth is not defined by how well I perform in front of others, how great I am at blogging, how fast or far I can run, how athletic or in shape I am, or anything else I can come up with. There will always be times when I fail or stumble at those things, by my value and worth do not sway based upon them.

So many times I find myself trying to define who I really, truly am by using things like my job, my blog, my relationship, or my hobbies as an estimation of my value and worth. Don’t we all? As I put together this list (and it will be different for everyone) I found it incredibly freeing. As if I wanted to shout, “Do you hear that, lies? You don’t define me!” My prayer for you all today is that you are able to find a little freedom from what you’ve used in the past to define your worth, and fine that you have so much more to offer than that. And if you make a list, and share it with others, let me know how it goes!

Madison

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  • Findingmyself

    I have to tell you… I LOVE your blog! I struggled with an eating disorder for over 10 years but got help and am in recovery… I still struggle with food and your journey to acceptance within yourself and with food is truly inspiring. Thanks, for putting it out there!

  • http://sensualappeal.wordpress.com/ Kammie @ Sensual Appeal

    Love this list. Very honest and real. It’s an important thing to say these things but it’s even more important to actually believe them when you say them (at least most of the time). I’m glad you’re taking a step forward to bettering yourself and seeking a deeper understanding of who you and what makes you you :)

  • http://ohfigs.wordpress.com/ Marisa

    Great post! Love this!

  • Arbine

    LOVE this post. I need to make a list like this.
    Have a great day!

  • UrbanWife

    What a great reminder! Thanks for sharing these. I have a similar list. The toughest part is believing these external things don’t define me and it’s definitely a daily struggle sometimes.

  • Laura M Staugaitis

    This was the perfect thing for me to read this morning — exactly what I needed. It’s an ongoing question, especially as my work, home, and social life are totally intertwined. Thank you!

  • http://colpanna.com/ Liv B

    I love the idea of this post & I understand the reasons for defining yourself by what you’re not – but what *does* does define you?

  • Halle

    Madison – thank you for sharing! I’ve really been struggling with this subject lately – it’s nice to hear I’m not alone in feeling this way, and to see how others sort out these emotions and self-discoveries. Will be journaling about this tonight!

    • Madison Mayberry

      Halle, thank you for your comment. I’m sorry you’ve been struggling, but it’s great to hear that you’re taking some time for yourself to journal and reflect on what you’re going through. Sending prayers your way!