You know sometimes, when you realise you've been identifying with something ... and realise you don't have to? That you can change that belief. And that it doesn't define you.
That's how I was with smoking ... I smoked 20+ cigarettes a day from 16 years old until 38. And when I stopped I was worried about WHO I WOULD BE.
It sounds insane, but my identity was as a smoker. I wondered who I would be as a non-smoker.
The answer of course, was me ... the same as I was as a smoker during all the time I didn't smoke. If that makes sense.
It really made me think though - I'm glad I realised it but it felt stupid and I wondered why I wanted that identity, why I was actually worried about who I would be without it.
That was 9 years ago now.
Last year when I decided to lose weight I thought I'd like to get back to a (UK) size 14.
It felt like an achievable goal, and it felt like a size where I would feel 'normal'.
I also identified that it was a size I'd been happy at as an adult and had been kind of default size for me - I loved getting smaller and hated getting bigger but 14 felt 'enough'.
Well, then I became a 12 and THEN decided to reach for more, be braver, bolder, go for what I really want - and hadn't been, hadn't lived in my body at a small size as an adult.
But why should that mean I couldn't? Why shouldn't I choose the big goal?
Why not say it, go for it, commit to it? Just because you haven't done it before, doesn't mean your life has to be lived in where you've been comfortable before.
And ... I've never been very fit, well, since a child/teenager who loved sports and running and ballet.
Not part of my identity.
Not until now. I've been softer, curvier, warmer ... as a child I was lanky, free, needed movement.
So I'm now making that my identity too.
I am going to become the fittest I've ever been in my life.
This is BRAND NEW!
Fit and strong and lean (and still soft).
I don't know why I've been scared of saying it, wanting it, doing it.
But now I do.
We can choose our identities, shrug off those that no longer serve, that in fact hold us back.
What do you really want?
Who do you want to be?