These 7 Tiny Clues Reveal Who You Are

They inform you. They tell the world too.

Image for post
Image for post
Photo by Godisable Jacob from Pexels

“The privilege of a lifetime is to become who you truly are.” –Carl Jung

Who are you?

These 7 Tiny Clues Reveal Who You Are

“It takes courage to grow up and become who you really are.” — E.E. Cummings

Discovering who we are is often seen as a complex process. It can be when it comes to matters of the psyche. But people frequently neglect the basics — all of which are (mostly) within our control.

1. The way you dress.

Your physical appearance is your shop window — perhaps not to the soul, but to how you frame yourself as a person. It’s an expression of your personality. It tells a story about you.

2. The way you walk.

I took a walk with a young client to try to “get” how he felt. At nearly 7 feet (2.1metres) tall, he was quite at home sitting on my couch. But when we hit the packed city street, he cowered. He became awkward and defensive as people stared. I could have guessed this, but it was powerful to witness it — and gave us more information to work with.

3. The way you act in restaurants.

Not just restaurants, of course, this is code for how you treat people who are employed to serve or help you. What’s your style? Are you loud and obnoxious in getting what you want? Impatient? Flirtatious? Passive-aggressive? Do you use basic manners? Do you treat people with respect, even when you are paying for service. Play this one however you want, but know you are broadcasting who you are in neon lights.

4. The way you do what you love.

Have you ever watched people engaged in activities they feel passionate about? It’s as though nothing else exists. If it’s an art or show of craft, their focus, attention to detail — and the pride in doing so — gives you chills.

5. The way you treat people who are struggling.

The way you treat all people who are struggling matters, but it’s particularly telling with those you love and care about. Are you warm and empathetic? Do you take the time to listen? Or do you sit there, feigning empathy, while scrolling your phone and running your To-Do list in your head?

6. The way you are vulnerable.

Vulnerability is having its moment — we all know it’s cool to break down the emotional wall, to be honest with our feelings. Mostly we assume these to be negative emotions, but it’s just as important to express yourself positively — to love, to laugh, to show joy and excitement.

7. The way you handle sh*t storms.

No matter who you are, life will throw down the gauntlet. It’ll test you. It may even try to break you. Are you a person who tosses in the towel too easily? Do you freeze or become emotional? Do you fill up with rage, hold grudges, seek revenge, allow distress or disappointment to lock you in a cage, to narrow your life?

Written by

Clinical psychologist, writer. Editor of On the Couch: Practical psychology for everyday life.

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store