Self-discovery is the greatest discovery there is in this life. Every other question man strives to answer depends on this one. And until you understand your true self-identity, you may neither know your proper position in life nor take your best place in the world.

Louis Efron wrote in 2016 that “According to Stedham Graham, an American business man and author of many books, 6.5 billion people don’t know who they are.” Though this figure may be debatable, the indication is that most people in the world don’t know their true self-identities. In 2016 world population was estimated at about 7.4 billion people. If we view this against what the late Myles Munroe said that “Until you find yourself you will always be someone else”, it would mean that about 87.8 percent of people in the world are living as someone else. While only about 12.2 percent of the people know themselves and live their true selves.

The question of self-identity is so important because until you discover your own identity, you wouldn’t feel fulfilled, and you may not know what best value to personally add to the world. Those who make name in the world, in whatever field, career or profession, are those who discovered and appreciated their true identities.

Examples abound among very successful men and women in the world. Do you know that Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, and Mark Zuckerberg dropped out of school to pursue what they were wired for? One of the reasons they became billionaires is that they discovered their real identities. Self-identity applies whether you are male or female. For instance, some women who have recorded notable career, professional and business success because they discovered who they were include: Oprah Winfrey (the entertainment queen in the world), Ngozi Okonjo-Iwela (former minister of finance in Nigeria and foremost economist at World Bank), Loretta Lynch (first African American to be sworn in as Attorney General); Celina Williams (the best lawn tennis player in the world).

Mistaken self-identity, wishing you were somebody else, or even believing that you are inferior to others, is energy-sapping, thought-distorting, and highly dis-empowering. The most important question you have to find the right answer to is: who are you? A French poet, Fran├žois Villon, wrote that “I know everything except myself.” This is true of perhaps the great majority in the world. They know so many things in the world except their true identities.

Interestingly, so much is locked up in the discovery of our real identity. This is so because what we have (our levels of success, income, health, and productivity) are always proportional to who we are (our actual identity). The following can help us discover ourselves.

Steps To Discovering Who You Are

(1) Know that you are the selfsame image of God. The Book, Genesis 1:27 says, “God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.”

(2) Know that God is an all-round Success. He is full of wisdom, power, creativity, health, uprightness, integrity, love, abundance, and all the good things in life you can think of.

(3) Know that God created you in His spirit-image with the above capacities. But you know what? No person is created to live independent of God. Each of us is wired to absolutely depend on Him. Until we solely hold onto Him, we wouldn’t be able to fully release our God-given potentials and abilities. We can do nothing without God but we can do all things through Him who strengthens us.

The fact that, despite our different races and nationalities, we have same number of brain cells, same number of teeth, same number of fingers, toes, and eyes, same colour of blood (red), and same chemicals within us, means that we are divinely equipped on equal basis to excel in life. So there is no basis for feeling disadvantaged in life. The fact that we all have different thumb prints also means that each of us is uniquely and wonderfully made.

(4) Search for the true meaning of life: To many, life just means existence. To sleep, wake up, shower and dress up, eat and drink, go to work or business, recreate, and all that. But what does life mean to you? To every person, apart from knowing “who you are” the next most important question in this world is “why are you here?” What is the sole purpose for investing your breath and energy daily? Why did God create you? The true meaning of life will be seen in the purpose for which you live. This is what life should mean to you.

(5) Ask God in prayer. In the questions of your true, inner identity, God is the authentic source of all the knowledge you require in that direction. Every other source will give you mutilated picture and muddled understanding. If you believe that there is a God that created the entire world and all human beings including you, then ask Him in prayer to reveal Himself to you. He willingly and gladly obliges every person that asks sincerely. Since we are the express image of God, it is in knowing God we can truly discover who we are.

(6) Who are your closest 7 persons? Outside God, the seven closest persons you have in each of these areas will be very useful in helping you discover who you are: Father, Mother, Pastor, Teacher/Author/Coach, Mentor (in career or business), Spouse, and Friend.