WHAT IT MEANS
Your identity goes far beyond your name and appearance. It involves your values, beliefs, and character. Really, your identity is everything that makes you, you—both inside and out.
WHY IT MATTERS
When you have a strong sense of identity, you stand up for your beliefs instead of allowing your peers to control you.
“A lot of people are like the mannequins you see in a store display. They don’t choose the clothes they wear; others do.”—Adrian.
“I’ve learned how to stand up for what is right even when it’s hard. I can tell who my real friends are by how they act and by how I act around them.”—Courtney.
BIBLE PRINCIPLE: “Stop being molded by this system of things, but be transformed by making your mind over.”—Romans 12:2.
WHAT YOU CAN DO
Develop a sense of who you are now and who you want to become by analyzing your strengths, your weaknesses, and your convictions. A good way to start is to answer the following questions.
Strengths: What talents and skills do I have? What are my strong points? (For example: Am I punctual? self-controlled? hardworking? generous?) What positive things do I do?
TIP: Are you having trouble identifying positive things about yourself? Ask a parent or a trusted friend what strengths he or she sees in you and why.
BIBLE PRINCIPLE: “Let each one examine his own actions, and then he will have cause for rejoicing in regard to himself alone, and not in comparison with the other person.”—Galatians 6:4.
Weaknesses: What aspects of my personality need the most work? When am I especially susceptible to temptation? In what areas could I exercise greater self-control?
BIBLE PRINCIPLE: “If we make the statement, ‘We have no sin,’ we are misleading ourselves.”—1 John 1:8.
Convictions: What moral code do I follow, and why? Do I believe in God? What evidence has convinced me of his existence? What actions do I consider to be unjust, and why? What convictions do I hold about the future?
BIBLE PRINCIPLE: “Thinking ability will keep watch over you, and discernment will safeguard you.”—Proverbs 2:11.