How others define us

It is what we do that makes us who we are. They are characteristics of how we see ourselves and how others see us.

I could define myself by the fact I have Cerebral Palsy, but I choose not to. As a child because I would start something and not finish, certain family members would define me as being lazy, but the truth is I struggled with neurological issues and perhaps that’s the point.

Although we may not always define ourselves, we will spend our lives being defined by other people. If we’re clever we’re defined by our intelligence, in the same way we’re defined by our lack of intelligence. Our actions, our thoughts, our intentions and our outlook all define us. I believe others play their part.

We are defined by our existence and how we live our lives. If we’re caring, kind and compassionate, we are defined by those attributes too, but if we were to put out unkind thoughts, or say unkind things to others, we are defined by those too.

Unfortunately, and it has been my experience that once we are defined, always defined until others choose to see and perceive us differently. How people define us sticks, no matter how much we change over the years.

That for me has been a big problem, because it’s further from the truth of how I am. You only have to look at The CP Diary, to read my blogs, to see what defines me and why it was wrong for me to be defined.


6 Jan, 2014

8 thoughts on “How others define us

  1. I totally agree with you. I have been defined by my actions as a teenager and young adult.

    I was reckless and rebellious, but that’s not me any more. I’m a caring compassionate person and I think people are starting to see the real me.

    People do change. There are those (a small percentage) that don’t, but we must see the change and not define people by who they used to be.

    1. Well said, absolutely. I believe people do change, we can all change. Change isn’t just open to certain individuals. We have to want to change, to make a difference for ourselves and other people too.

      Your last sentence says it all though. As people change, we must re-think the change, so that we see and treat them differently.

      Thanks Lisa. I feel so much better.

  2. As you know I have been sick for quite some time, 21 years to be exact when I was first diagnosed with thyroid cancer. I don’t let it define me, it is just something that I have to work around. I always say I have cancer but cancer doesn’t have me.

    As far as how other people perceive me, most times I don’t care because I am happy with myself. Just because I’m a little fluffy doesn’t mean that I’m a lazy slob. I keep a neat house, do the best I can with my appearance. If people still talk then they will talk, sometimes there is no good that you can do that will change their minds.

    I’m at peace with myself. I’m a good wife, mother and child. I do good to others even though sometimes it’s not reciprocated. I believe in the saying “do the next right thing,” and in turn the right things will happen to us.

    1. I think you’re right, people will talk if they want to talk. Even if we do everything right, they will still find something to define us with. It’s the nature of people sometimes.

      I think you have a wonderful attitude to life and how you deal with things and I agree with your sentiment when you say, “do the next right thing” and in turn the “right things will happen to us.”

      I believe they will. Thanks Maria.

  3. People do tend to define others by how they look, act and speak and that is a shame but an inevitable part of the human condition it seems.

    However, it’s not all doom and gloom as through your site we can all learn a little enlightenment and that’s a good thing.

    1. Thank you!! Yes it does seem inevitable, but so wrong and doesn’t need to happen like that. I think we just have to be kind, caring and compassionate.

      I know we all deal with different things and that does have a bearing to some extent on how we approach our lives, but I’m not sure why these attributes cannot be achieved.

      We just have to change the way we see and do things and look at the bigger picture. I have.

  4. Yes it can be very hard to break away from how others have defined us, as in my case where I was put in the “nerd” category. It wasn’t my choice to end up being forced to wear glasses by a girl who tried to brain me.

    Kids can definitely be so unbelievably cruel when they consider you to be different! I was also highly intelligent with nearly a photographic memory, which only made things worse. Combine this with being pretty much the “98 pound weakling” and I really felt like I had 3 strikes against me!

    I’m not sure of how people really define me now and I’ve decided that I really don’t care anymore. I’m done acting like a trained monkey trying to get people to like me.

    I’ve tried so hard to fit in with a lot of different groups and have come to realize that it doesn’t matter if I fit in or not. I’m just trying to do the best I can to be there for the people who really matter in my life.

    It’s OK for me to be myself and actually put my own needs on the front burner when I need to. People will usually like you or not so it’s no longer my problem!

    1. I have to say Randy, I agree with everything you’ve outlined here. People will always have their opinions and define us whether we try or not.

      I would go with your own thoughts and do what pleases you. Like you Randy, I also feel being defined is no longer my problem! Thanks for your response Randy.

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