Sometimes, having a home – based business can really make you think about things. One thing that has been on my mind a lot lately is how much a person’s work becomes a part of their identity. Of course, the degree to which this is true varies greatly from one person to another and that is one of the fascinating things about it.
For example, a senior executive who has spent the last twenty years of her career working her way up the corporate ladder may consider her identity as an executive to be an integral part of who she is. In contrast, a young person who is just entering the work force may not feel much if any connection to his or her work and may not think of it as something that contributes to their identity in any way. These are the two extremes, and many people fall somewhere in the middle.
I have been thinking about this interesting topic within the context of my decision to place my law license on inactive status while I focus on being a full time stay at home mom and a writer. Theoretically, since I spent so much time, money, and effort going to law school, studying for the bar, and preparing to become a lawyer, one would think that being a lawyer would be a fairly large part of my identity. The funny thing is, I am not sure that anyone that I met on the street would suspect that I am a lawyer. Of course lawyers come in all shapes and sizes, but there are some of us who are more clearly identifiable than others. What’s more, I do not frequently bring it up in conversation, so only people who really know me well know that I’m a lawyer.
In thinking about how big of a part my professional roles play in my idea of who I am as a person, being a lawyer is a surprisingly small piece of the total picture. I do identify quite a bit more with my role as a writer, and that is another, bigger part of my identity. Those pieces commingle with the roles of mother, wife, sister, daughter, outdoor enthusiast, avid reader, foodie, and many others to make me who I am.
How big of a role does your home – based business play in your identity?
Photo by mconnors on morguefile.com.