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Identity loss, transitions and personal growth through life

Identity is a fundamental part of being human. It shapes the way we see ourselves and how we interact with the world around us. It gives us a sense of purpose, meaning, and belonging, which in turn gives us some security. However, there are times in life when we may feel that we've lost our identity. This can have significant implications on our mental health, relationships, and overall well-being.

There are lots of reasons why one might feel they’ve lost their identity. Often, it is linked with a significant life change, think the biggies: birth, death, marriage, divorce and even changes at work - new role, returning to work after maternity leave, changes in the organisation or job loss. It could also be due to a prolonged period of stress, anxiety, or depression, which might be linked to the life changing event or not. In some cases, it may be the result of trying to conform to societal expectations or not living true to oneself.

When we look at those examples, it is no surprise in my mind that many mothers feel lost at points through their life once it becomes more than just you - the ‘you are eating for 2 now’ comments spring to mind!

The implications of feeling that you've lost your identity can be profound. It can lead to feelings of confusion, emptiness, and detachment from the world around you. It can also result in a loss of motivation, a lack of direction in life, and a feeling of being lost. In severe cases, it can lead to depression, anxiety, and other mental health problems, but often mums continue regardless and you wouldn’t necessarily see the full impact from the outside.

Feeling that you've lost your identity can have a huge impact on how you show up in the world. Two big areas this can affect are your relationships and your self-esteem.

So, what can you do if you feel that you've lost your identity? The first step is to acknowledge your feelings and accept that it's okay to not have all the answers. It's also essential to take some time for self-reflection and introspection. Ask yourself what values, beliefs, and goals are important to you. What do you enjoy doing, and what makes you feel fulfilled? These questions can help you reconnect with yourself and rediscover your identity.

It's also helpful to seek support from others. Talk to a trusted friend, family member, or mental health professional about your feelings. They can provide you with guidance and support as you navigate this challenging time.

By acknowledging and taking action, you can rediscover your identity and create a more fulfilling and meaningful life.

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