Understanding Identity : The Importance Of Identity

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The Importance of Understanding Identity 37% of teenagers claim they do not completely know who they are yet. Stageoflife.com conducted a survey on a group of 400 students, asking them questions about their individuality. 66% of this group say that they are not seen as who they truly are by others. The Oxford English dictionary defines identity as “The fact of being who or what a person or thing is.” This denotation only points out the surface of an individual, such as physical traits rather than their personality. This meaning should be changed because as it is crucial for humans to recognize our depth. Identity is how you are influenced by the experiences in your life. My character is a direct result of the experiences I call mine. The most drastic impact on my selfhood was when I, a reserved and naive twelve-year-old, discovered the internet. During the dull, foggy time I lived with my mother in Albia, I had few comforts. The world was cold. I had absolutely no friends at my new school. These elements combined to allow a new demon to fester inside of me, who is now known as my good friend: depression. I believe frigid weather has a scent; a concoction of sharp and fragile feelings. I associate this smell with the miserable time I spent in that town. Now, when the waves of frost roll in, I cannot help but feel that the worst part of the year is coming. I love winter; easily my favorite season, while somehow being my most dreaded. Depression can be seasonal. All I could hope for was an escape during this lonely period in my life. In Albia, we had no computer, no internet, no phone. We had television, but only one to share between five people. All I could do was sit on my bed and draw, hoping my small radio could pick up a channel... ... middle of paper ... ...gger person and not pick a fight. She is showing maturity through her restraint, and displaying her respect for her father. Scout’s identity in To Kill a Mockingbird affirms that identity is how you are influenced by the experiences in your life because she would not have been the same character without the events that unfolded. The events we face in life shape our individuality. Seeing past the surface of an individual is important to bettering the human species. We are prone to hate what we do not understand, dancing around in our ignorance at the price of suffering. We reduce others to stereotypes and expect unrealistic things from those we do not fully grasp their potential. Understanding the complex layers of identity should be a goal for everyone. The world should refuse to see another person die because others could not be bothered to reach out and save them.

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