What about your childhood shaped you for this moment?
When I look back on being younger and wonder what about it crafted this identity that is my current self, I tend to wonder what moments stand out as being self-defining times. With one word it mind, adversity seems to resonate the most with me. Growing up being a short, hyper, awkward kid, I faced a lot of adversity and had to figure out coping mechanisms in order to get by. After a short period of time, I realized that humour was my best weapon against all the hurdles and challenges I was set to face while growing up. I wasn’t the funniest kid and didn’t have the best jokes, however I was always able to think on my feet and have good comebacks that got my peers laughing when faced with adversity. This helped shape my online identity going forward and I became comfortable with being the odd one out of a group and knowing that I was not like other kids.
Nowadays, personal branding online has a lot to do with how you present yourself as well as how you react to others. While growing up, I would define myself as a very reactionary kid who acted out of emotion far more than from a rational state of mind. With the online presence growing daily, I find myself lucky to have not documented lots of my outbursts online from a young age and feel that the youth of today have the unfortunate reality of having to be posted online when making mistakes. This can be disastrous for self-branding and disadvantages those like myself who think in the moment and not long term. For this reason, it is more important than ever to be mindful of what you are saying in the moment as it could haunt you online for the rest of your life. This reality did not shape me as a child but certainly would have today. As a kid you say so much stuff you end up regretting and I feel it is truly unfair for this generation to have to deal with the realities of social media.
Overall, there is not one single defining moment who made me who I am today, and instead it is a variety of events and sequences that created my online identity and personality. I am very happy to have had the experiences I did as young kid and feel that even a decade later, the youth of today face many more struggles than I was exposed to at their age. Adversity is a reality of all of us, however with the upkeep and unfortunate hurdles that social media poses for all of us, I believe that we need to be more mindful than ever of self-care and trying to forget about all the stuff going on around us. Disconnecting is something we should all try to do more often to disengage from the online world and focus on the real world.