Who I am, Who I’m Not and Who I Want to Be!

I was listening to The Fray this morning and one of my favorite songs of theirs (though I really do like them all) is You Found Me.

In that song is a verse that really speaks to me and inspired me to write today’s blog, it is:

“Who I am, Who I’m Not and Who I Want to Be”

And it got me thinking about those things and how easy it is to not really know… especially in a business that WANTS YOU to be so many things… it’s easy to lose yourself. Sounds ominous, right? It really isn’t… it’s about self discovery and your true professional passion. Let me explain…


Who I am… When was the last time you asked yourself who you were? Have you defined, YOU? In order to grow, in my opinion, you need self awareness and understanding. This means being totally honest with you too. Look in a mirror and see you… just you.

Why is this important? Because in order to be who you want to be, you have to first understand all about who you’ve become and who you are today. Are you bubbly and outgoing naturally or because of your job? Are you analytical in life, or just because you’ve been doing your variance report all day? Are you someone who can easily talk to others and sell, or do you just have really solid product knowledge? Are you the kind of person who enjoys leading a team, or did you just work your way up to becoming a Regional Director and so it sort of fell in your lap? Do you genuinely have an interest in the growth & development of others, or were you just great at your job so it was assumed you should train?

Ask yourself the tough questions, answer honestly and you might just surprise yourself. From there…

Who I’m Not… I remember asking myself this question back in 2003, when I was faced with a tough decision on which career path to take… and who I’m not, is someone who wants to manage multiple multimillion dollar assets. I have no interest in writing several budgets, being called out in the middle of the night because a building is on fire, or getting bids and supervising cap-x projects. Being a Regional Manager (though I have done it), is not the fire in my belly. It’s not who I am or who I want to be. But, it took me a long time to learn that… I abandoned who I was and what I was passionate about to give it a try. Someone once told me that “I’ll never run a multifamily management company, being a trainer”… but the thing is… running a management company is not who I am or what I want. I wanted to run the training and development for a multifamily company (which I do now), but running a whole company was not in my area of interest. So I know pretty clearly, who I’m not. Do you? Last up is…

Who I Want to Be… I’ve often met other professionals whom I admired and I’d like to think that I’ve taken a little nugget or two from them along my journey, really trying to mold together exactly who I want to be. But, as with most things, this is an evolution. Who I wanted to be a year ago is different than who I want to be today. My personal life has changed, so it makes sense that my professional life would as well. What was important to me then may not be important to me now, so who I want to be is ultimately different. Who I want to be will continue to be different, but the beauty of it is… that I’ve recognized it. So I won’t be chasing a dream or working toward a goal that isn’t important anymore, I’ve renegotiated my goals and I’m chasing different dreams. Have you defined who you want to be? Recently?

Ask yourself… “Who I Am, Who I’m Not and Who I Want to Be”… and remember the only thing holding you back, is you.


  1. Thanks Tara. This is crrtainly a thought provoking post. At the minimum, this is a good exercise for anyone seeking to get more out of life and at the maximum it’s the key to achieving greatness.

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