Have you ever had to introduce yourself in a workshop or classroom setting? Ok, so you know how it is, everyone gets up when it's their turn to speak and they say their name and tell everyone in the class something or a few things to describe who they are. Something like this, "Hi my name is Sandra. I am a mother. I am a nurse. I have 3 children and I love dogs." Well, I don't do it like that-anymore. I use to until I experienced an AHA moment about 2 years ago-while introducing myself.
I got up to tell the classroom who I was and instead of doing the 'norm' I did something a little different. I got to sit there and listen to about 17 people introduce themselves and then I went last. But I sat there in aw as everyone followed the exact same pattern. Everyone shared their occupation. How many children or pets they had. If they were married or divorced and hobbies. I got up and said something like this:
"Hello everyone. I am so excited to be here with you all. Well, Elizabeth is the name my father gave me. He named me after Mary's cousin-in the bible. He never explained why, but I get it now and personally think it's a beautiful name. I am kind. I am a giver. I am compassionate. I am welcoming. I can be very silly. I am passionate about empowering women and youth. I am courageous. I am a go getter. I love LOVE and I am loyal....." I probably said a few more things. But it went a little something like that. Let me tell you, the look on everyone's face was priceless. They were waiting for more but at the same time they were totally intrigued. I then said, "oohhh and God has given me the awesome privilege of giving birth to two rock star boys whom I personally feel are the coolest kids in the world"
One woman spoke out and asked, " ummm can we do this all over again?" And the entire class laughed.
Please get this clear, you are not your occupation. You are not your marital status. You are not how many kids you have or don't have. You are not broken. You are not a victim. You are NOT the titles you wear or have been given. You are not your name.
The next time you are asked to introduce yourself to a classroom or group setting, tell them who YOU ARE!
I have created a small list here for you to read and pick out a few words that resonate with you. You may also add to this list. Print it out, circle or highlight the words that best describe YOU.
Which of these traits do you possess and value:
- Great Listener
- A child of God
- A woman of God
- A believer
- A woman / man of faith
- World changer
- A giver
- A problem solver
- Lifelong Learner
- Self Assured
These are just a few. Go ahead and add your own.