People understand social identity as a sense of belonging centered on a membership group. It is how a person views his or her inner self. According to Tajfel (1979), he recommended that an individual’s group can be extinguished through the following categories; clan, sexual category, social class or even ball teams. Groups which people belong to; can boost self-esteem and be a great source of self-importance. If I refer to psychology, I realize that the meaning of identity broadens. It entails a person’s character, words, principles, and qualities. Generally, social status is a self-image of a person. People grow in social identity through a process of socialization which entails learning how to interact with other social personalities.
Trying to describe myself, I wrote down my social and personal identities. They based on my past conduct, present character, how I am, how I view myself and my future goals. Therefore, I give a statement that my social identity has affected my past and it is touching my future too. Being an Asian, I grew up in a wealthy family. During my junior years, I sometimes would see black people dealing with issues of discrimination. Most importantly, there are several types of social identity. They include political, religious, ethnic, academic, career, sexual gender, group and personal relationship. Majorly, I am discussing three social identities that describe and are part of me.
I realize that many people identify themselves through ethnicity. All along, social researchers have categorized people according to their race. For instance, a person can identify himself as an American, Asian, Russian or African American. However, I am identify myself as Asian, and there has been an awareness of reducing racial identity. Therefore, people define themselves through a country of origin, a language they speak and their culture.
Gender, this category of social identification is much fundamental. It is when a person is stated as a man or a woman, I identify myself as woman. Many implications are associated with gender. Examples include; character traits- mostly, men are known for having leadership roles while women are known for taking care of babies. Physical characters- men are tall with broad shoulders and women have soft voices. It reminds me of a situation whereby, my friend and I were volunteering in Africa. She is an African American doctor, but people could not agree to that just because she is a woman with that working title. It made me pose a question, is gender the terminal identifier to a person’s career?
A person is socially identified by his or her faith. They range from Christians, Muslims, Pagans, Jewish and Hindus. I am a Christians and I enjoy being a Christian. I am aware that this will affect my future when we decide to get married because one will be forced to convert. According to me, Religion is an essential social identity. On the other hand, social identity has created both opportunities and barriers for me. To begin with, my behavior and character traits have influenced most of my classmates. They even go to the extent of terming me as the most faithful and book warm student. I frequently get opportunities to mentor others. At some point, my friends would prefer me to drive them if they get drunk at a party. However, being an Asian does not necessarily mean that I am eligible to access any place whenever I want. I recall a particular incident whereby I got lost and found myself amidst people speaking other languages. That was the worst experience because no one could help me out. Besides, I have witnessed social identity become a problem for many people. I focus more on women because they get deprived of legal rights. For instance; in some countries only men are entitled to lands, women are not suitable for education, they do not obtain medical healthcare. If I do my analysis on different countries, it comes to my attention that countries which invest in educating girls have developed productivity and economical rate. Also, poverty has proven to be a social inequality that identifies most communities. During my volunteering period in Africa, I noticed a community with mud houses. Surrounded by them was a well-whitewashed house that was erected at the top of the hill. My curiosity could not help. Therefore, I inquired about the state of the owner. He was identified as an elder who picked revenues from the poor. As much as social identity defines us, we must strive to overcome the barriers that are attached to it.
Social identity can influence a person’s career in many ways. According to me, I am proud of my cultural identity. In the work area, many opt to adopt the new culture and secretly maintain their old beliefs. Also, language identity is a barrier. It is because serving clients who do not understand my language calls for a translator. When clients are not able to express themselves, they will look for another place where style is not a problem. At some point, being a Christians was technical for me because I had volunteered in a Pagan community. I put more efforts trying to convince them that there is God that we all serve. To be sincere, I almost lost hope in that career. The course identifies progress can be shaped by anticipated events. Changes in identity involve a person getting rid of the original personality or adding another one. However, my reflection on social status is within the family I grew up. When I was young, it was the most important in determining my cultural identity. Critically, every member of the family knew what was anticipated of them. For instance, my dad was the head of the family, mum being his helper and we the children had an obligation to obey them. I grew up knowing that the eldest sibling was to be esteemed. Girls were supposed to have decency and reliability. The male individuals in the family protected the girls from unsolicited suitors. Boys were given an obligation to be respectful, brave, honest and robust. They were trained to be family’s sole providers. Being intensely aware of my own identity, I succeeded in constructing my reputation based on individual essential value features such as being friendly, social and kind. As stated above, I actively participated in the class by completing my assignments. I always ensured that I was on good terms with the teachers. In their support to social identity, Leary and Tangney (2004), note that excellence and success in academics cannot be existent without failure. They further supported the fact that individual students must be discernable as letdowns for others to be acknowledged as successful. That clarifies my academic brilliance and similarly defines poor performance for some of my friends.
In conclusion, I realize that human beings are in need of each other to cohabit. It is because they are social. Social identity theory supports the fact because it explains the personal and group relationships. As a youth and a learner, conventional methods of identity were advantageous to me because I was able to give a sense of balance between unlike groups of common sets in favor of my social life and enactment. From my experiences, I learn that the social identity of a child is vital for the wellbeing. Personality gives a sense of belonging to an individual’s life. Lastly, I realize that without integrity in the society, one cannot have a sense of contentment, understanding, and honor.