11 Dancing With Wisdom: The problems of basing my identity on my performance.
"How does wisdom equip and empower us to live life such that we rise above the meaninglessness and mediocrity around us and the different challenges we face?"
That is the opening question of chapter 8 of the Dancing With Wisdom book.
To answer that question we begin by raising the question of identity or being - who am I called to be? It is the most fundamental question of my personal existence. We are, after all, human beings and not human doings!
Yet how often so much of our identity seems to come from what we do? Its the basic question often to a stranger we might meet at an event, asking them "What do you do?"
The problem is by basing my identity on my performance I can quickly fall between the extremes of arrogance at how well I am doing or despair when I don't measure up to my own or other people's standards. This is something we don't necessarily give much conscious thought to but in deep and even mysterious ways it can drive our behaviours, actions and motivations.