I Can’t Find Me

I’ve lost me.

I find glimpses here and there, but mostly I’m chasing me in someone else’s life. I see someone who is successful, influential or inspiring and I start chasing thinking maybe that is me. But when I come up short, I discover that it is really not me.

I look at others and see things I want to be.

I wonder how much time I have lost chasing someone other than me?

I’m tired. I’m tired of chasing everyone but me. I define me by the standards others have set. I absorb those standards because I want to conform, I want to be “in”, I want to be liked. Ironically I only look like a follower, a copycat.

I’m not a follower. I’ve been gifted to lead, but often I’m so insecure that I give in to following. I’m scared to lead. I’m scared to fail, so I follow what has worked for someone else only to fail at it myself.

Sometimes I try to be so much of what I’m not.

Do you understand? Do you do this too?

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  • Pete Wilson May 6, 2008  

    I do struggle with this Jenni. Some of the most accomplished leaders are driven by needs of insecurity. The problem is this will always lead to an “unhealthy” version of leadership. Continue to seek God and refuse to compare yourself to others. I’ll try to fight this battle with you. I believe at Cross Point we are striving to create an environment where people can lead from their own unique giftedness, personality, and passion.

  • Anne Jackson May 6, 2008  

    ALL the TIME! Insecurity and low self confidence are two of the many thorns in my side. I am truly trying to be me…but it is friggin hard.

  • Marla Saunders May 6, 2008  

    Jenni, in the short time I have known you it amazes me how many times you tune into the underlying fears that we all have, even if we hide them most of the time. You have a sensitive nature, which unfortunately means you will feel things more deeply. But that characteristic is also part of what makes you a leader.

    I have also found that times of great insecurity in my life are the times when God is crafting a change in me — either in my external circumstances or in an internal attitude or outlook. I don’t handle changes well, even when they are an outgrowth of my own learning or life! So when change comes, I tend to say just what you did: I can’t find ME!

    So on the outside looking in, if I were to guess, I’d say that you are going through a time of growth that may be accelerated to the point that it feels uncomfortable. Hang on for the ride…it will be worth it.

  • Julie P May 6, 2008  

    Ouch, ouch, ouch. Yes. I absolutely understand. I feel it all the time. In fact, I just commented to Janice on Sunday while we were on the worship team together – “I am SO not hip enough to be up here.”

    I know I struggled with all of this before I was a wife and mom, but sometimes I find it even harder now. Yes, I am thrilled to be Greg’s wife and to stay home with Natalie and Ethan – but I am more than those things, too. I just wish I knew where that part of me went.

  • Brian May 6, 2008  

    this happens with individuals no doubt…how many times have you seen this in churches as a whole?

  • brandiandboys May 6, 2008  

    You know I constantly struggle with finding myself. My frustration comes when I realize that life is zooming by while I am searching self. I’m a people pleaser so I often realize that sometimes I am just who people want me to be, rather than what I really want. Sometimes I have to stop and remember that first I am a child of God and remember the value of that….and go from there!

    Thank you for your transparency.

  • Rachel May 6, 2008  

    When I start freaking out about ‘who am I?’ or “what have I become?”, I am reminded that I am a child of God. If you remember this, you realize that The Bible says, “child” not adult or leader or whatever title you put on yourself…just CHILD. Children are always learning, testing authority, falling down, crying and having to try again. Sound familiar? I agree with Marla, you are probably having ‘growing pains.’

  • Julie P May 6, 2008  

    Thanks a lot, Jenni…I’ve had this on my mind all day, even after I posted a comment!! I just blogged about it myself – sort of an offshoot of your general idea:


  • Judi Free.com May 6, 2008  

    I do feel this way. I have to force myself to recognize that all of those insecurities are just lies…

  • Linda Ojutkangas May 6, 2008  

    I struggle with this in leadership as well. In fact, I don’t know a leader who doesn’t. We are all afraid to fail, so we are constantly searching for the answers to each particular issue we are faced with. Ultimately, we need to remember that God gifted “us” for the place we are at, right now, this minute…and He will give us what we need when we face each issue. I have lived and experienced a lot in my life, enough to know, that trying to be like someone else never works. I can always strive to be a better “me”, but I shouldn’t be ashamed of being “me”, because God created me and if I’m good enough for Him, then I have to be good enough for “me”.

    When I look at you, Jenni, I see a beautiful, talented, gifted woman and leader. I am very proud to call you my daughter. Just “rest” in God, knowing that He created you. You are fearfully and wonderfully made!

  • Jessica May 6, 2008  

    I deal with this all the time, But I think honestly I am doing much better with it. The problem is how we were raised, So much pressure on not failing that we fail trying not too. Trust in God! It will be ok! I love you!

  • Jenni Catron May 7, 2008  

    Thank you all for your honesty and your encouragement to me! Great discussion… glad I’m not the only one!

  • patrowland May 7, 2008  

    Insecurity is the twin brother of my other friend inadequacy. I feel this all the time, and I think it is a healthy reminder that I am never enough because I need the God acting on my behalf every day.

  • Grant May 7, 2008  

    you are certainly not the only one. this is a big one for me, too.

  • chasing natalie May 8, 2008  

    Hi Jenni, thanks for the comment. Your blog entry “I can’t find me” inspired me to leave behind my old blog “vagabond visions” which had over 100 posts and create a new blog “chasing natalie.” Your vulnerability in your post was so refreshing and again I say inspiring. You may have met one of my pastors at the ragamuffin blogging gathering earlier this week. Loran lichty? Anyway, I’m really enjoying your blog and thanks for making your views and insights available for the rest of us who are trying to find themselves.

  • Kori May 8, 2008  

    You don’t know me but I found your blog from the link on Brandi’s page. Wow – this post says so much of what I have been trying to articulate for a long time. Thank you for giving me the words. I am new to blogging but I may try to figure out how to link this to my blog.

  • HW May 9, 2008  

    Yep… I understand this completely. Ouch. Thanks for sharing!!!!