While being part of a group isn’t inherently a bad thing, not being 100% you is. Depression comes from playing a role. It comes from not being 100% authentic to your true self. If you become okay with being subservient to the ideals of the group, if it goes against your core beliefs, then you lose a part of yourself in the process.
While the process of identity may begin in childhood it is influenced by a number of factors:
- Individuation – This is what we’ll be discussing in more detail in this episode. This is the process that we go through to develop our own unique self.
- Society – Societal influences, not unlike the herd mentality I mentioned just a moment ago, play an important role in our identities. From culture to media, to gender and religion affect who we are and who we become. You may even feel pressure to change parts of yourself to fit in with the societal norm.
- And Family – While your caretakers growing up had a huge impact on you your family will continue to play an important role in shaping who you are. For better or for worse. Your relationship with your loved ones will affect whether or not you have a strong or weak sense of self.