Calm, Cool and Connected - The Guide Book to Peace of Mind

Reconnecting with Authentic Self-Identity

January 12, 2022 Calm, Cool and Connected Season 1 Episode 130
Calm, Cool and Connected - The Guide Book to Peace of Mind
Reconnecting with Authentic Self-Identity
Show Notes Transcript

Reconnecting with Authentic Self-Identity with Dr. Lisa-Marie Del Rio

We're all familiar with the term "identity crisis," but many of us haven't considered that we've spent our entire lives in one big identity crisis. Concepts of identity are fragile and susceptible to unhealthy bases, whether that be connected to finances, physical ability, or appearance. So how does one reconnect to healthy, authentic forms of identity?

Today Dr. Elizabeth speaks with Dr. Lisa-Marie Del Rio, an expert in healing and strengthening identity, about common problems with self-identity and how she helps her patients reconnect with their authentic selves. 

Key Takeaways from Dr. Fedrick's chat with Dr. Lisa-Marie:

• Hear how Dr. Lisa-Marie defines identity. 
• Learn why few things are as profound as personal concepts of identity.
• Find out the connection between identity and destiny.
• Learn what counterfeit forms of identity are and hear some common examples.
• Hear examples of healthy bases for identity 

All of this and more, on this episode of Calm, Cool and Connected.

To connect with Dr. Lisa-Marie Del Rio and learn more about her work, connect with her on Instagram: @dr.lisamarie.delrio

For more information on Dr. Elizabeth Fedrick, visit her website:
Connect with Dr, Fedrick on Instagram: @drelizabethfedrick

Watch the video interview here

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Dr. Elizabeth Fedrick: Hello and welcome to calm. Cool and connected. I'm your host, Dr.

Elizabeth. Developmental psychologists suggest that identity formation is one of the most profound experiences that an individual experiences throughout the lifespan. And that really, this is an ongoing process. that's influenced and evolves based on contextual life experiences. Our next guest, Dr.

Lisa Marie Del Rio is a psychologist who specializes in helping clients with healing and strengthening their identity. Dr. Del [00:01:00] Rio is here to talk with us about what exactly is identity and why it's so. 

Lisa-Marie: Hi, Dr. Doreo welcome. straight to be here. 


Dr. Elizabeth Fedrick: good to have you. Thank you for joining us before we jump in.

Let's talk a little bit about yourself. Tell us a little bit about the work that you do in the mental health field. 

Lisa-Marie: So I became a psychologist in My own journey has actually taken me to all different facets of psychology. So I started out in forensics. I moved over to addiction. I moved into trauma and then.

All of my experiences, personal and professional led me to this conceptualization of identity is pretty powerful for me. 

Dr. Elizabeth Fedrick: Okay. Yeah. So that is, so it sounds like this has been a whole evolution for yourself to get to very specifically what you're, you're doing, what you're supposed to be doing. It sounds like you were taken 

Lisa-Marie: on that journey.

Very much. I think a lot of us who are psychologists and in the helping profession, a lot of what we end up treating people is really based on our own [00:02:00] personal experiences. And it's such a deep journey of self connection that then translates into the therapeutic relationship with all the people who honor me by sitting across from.


Dr. Elizabeth Fedrick: I wholeheartedly agree with that. So let's start by talking about how would you describe identity? It's such a broad term. How would you break that down for our viewers 

Lisa-Marie: identity is really this unique set of characteristics, attitudes, values, our personal principles, and then motivating forces that combined to create.

This person that we are and nobody else it is so specific when you combine all of these features of who you are that literally it cannot be repeated by another human being. 

Dr. Elizabeth Fedrick: And why do you think that identity is so important? Like what, what about identity? Is so profound for an individual. 

Lisa-Marie: That is a great question.

And it's really the most fundamental [00:03:00] question of our lives. Isn't it? This question of who am I? We spend our entire lives. Trying to answer this huge question. And I think the reason why it is so important is because our identity is the thing that's going to connect us to our destiny, which is what we were put on this earth to do.

And our destiny. And our purpose in life is really the thing that's going to create fulfillment long-term. So we think that it's going to come from a partner or a fancy car, a beautiful house, or the way that we look or our fitness ability. And those are all counterfeit forms of identity that never fill us up because once you discover the truth of who you are, you know, what you were put on this earth to do.

And that is the thing that creates the fulfillment that we've been seeking for our entire. 

Dr. Elizabeth Fedrick: Can you elaborate a little bit on that term, counterfeit forms of identity. Tell me, tell me more about what you mean by. 

Lisa-Marie: So counterfeit forms of identity are all of [00:04:00] these fraudulent representations of a true established sense of self.

So a lot of us adopt or carry, bring into our species. I understanding of the self that is just counterfeit. So anything that creates a false sense of understanding, so that could include money or relationships or children, or a fitness is really huge today. And that seems to be what people are wanting the world to know about them.

Also like our hobbies for women beauty, we seek beauty, and that becomes the sense of self that we want. C about us. Also political crusades seems to be really relevant today. We attach ourselves to these political crusades to give us life, to give us meaning, but it's just, it's counterfeit and it, it comes and goes and it's not consistent.

We really want to build our relationship with ourself or our self-understanding off of things that can never be taken away from us. So that would [00:05:00] be. Personal values, principles. Our understanding of the world our spirituality, our relationships, the way that we connect to other people, really who we are on a deep level, that it doesn't matter where I put you.

You know, if I put you in Europe or Antarctica, or right here in Virginia Beach, you actually meet the same person in every area. 

Dr. Elizabeth Fedrick: So did these counterfeit forms of identity then do they lead to identity crises? Are they at all connected to that? 

Lisa-Marie: So the term identity crisis, I think it was mostly brought in from developmental psych.

And we think some, you know, when we're, when we learned to be a psychologist, we think that identity crisis has really only experienced during the teenagers when we're really trying to figure out who we are. But I think. For the reality is most of us spend our entire lives in a crisis. And when we adopt these counterfeit forms of identity, we might have everything on paper.

You know, we might have the [00:06:00] partner, the perfect job, everything on the outside, but we still just feel absolutely empty. And I think that that's crisis where we're really looking at things in our world and things that are surrounding us and really having a deep understanding. Like, I don't think this is feeling.

Anymore. I think that's the crisis that a lot of us are experiencing today when we attach ourselves to counterfeit forms of identity, that can be lost in instance. So I think an identity crisis comes from this understanding that I've lost certain things. So like when you work with athletes, when all of a sudden they receive an injury and they can't do the thing that they've always known because they put so much of who they are.

Ability. And then when it's lost in an instant that this existential crisis comes out, who am I, if I cannot have this thing. And I think a lot of us are operating like this and it does produce a sense of empty. And I think that's where the crisis then comes from. 

Dr. Elizabeth Fedrick: [00:07:00] Absolutely. That makes sense. Even thinking about the work that we do with empty-nesters or with, you know, these individuals who have people who go into retirement, the science of happiness is one of my favorite books and they, they talk a lot in that about.

When you go into retirement and that was your identity, your whole life. Because to your point there wasn't work put into like really knowing who you are at your core is more about what you do and not who you are. 

Lisa-Marie: That is so, so true. And I think most of us spend our entire lives, trying to answer that question.

Dr. Elizabeth Fedrick: Yeah, absolutely. So how do you help your clients work to heal their identity? So if somebody comes in, you can, you can very much tell that it is there's some counterfeit identity going on. How do you help them heal that 

Lisa-Marie: the first step really. This therapeutic relationship, you have to find a guide because a lot of us are too close to the problem.

We can't see our way out. So you're right. That finding a [00:08:00] guide is the number one step to identity consolidation. When you work with somebody who really struggles with who they are, what you have to start off with. Is removing all of the messages that we received from maybe early parent figures past relationships maybe society messages about the self that are really not for us to carry and a guide will help you figure out what.

In alignment with who you are and what needs to be discarded or reworked. So a lot of us, as we age, we attach ourselves to these messages of I'm unworthy, or I need to do this or be this in order to receive love. And all of that gunk in the way is actually blocking your ability to have a deep understanding of who you are.

So a guide will really help you clean that up. Process who you are. And a lot of like to do personality assessments or bring in different modalities to organize it, but then there's really this process of. Combining all the [00:09:00] parts of the self, synthesizing it into one, being where somebody starts like really operating out of this blueprint that they are, who they really truly are before any trauma happened to them before the world told you who you should be baby, before somebody broke your heart.

Before you got abandoned, before you lost yourself in your career, who were you before? All of that, and a guide will help you realign to the. Of your authenticity. 

Dr. Elizabeth Fedrick: I love that. And that's absolutely when we go back to those counterfeit forms of identity, that that makes sense, right? Because when you're sent the message throughout early childhood of you have to perform for love, or you have to caretake for love or whatever, those messages that are sent that often is then how it manifests and adulthood.

And so, I mean, that's a beautiful point that when we can figure it out, Okay, but you are so worthy prior to all that you're worthy, just because you exist. That's a really powerful message [00:10:00] to heal. 

Lisa-Marie: I think so the number one reason why a lot of us lose our identity is because we've lost our sense of connection to our emotions on a very basic level.

So as we age, we have to invalidate ourselves or abandoned what we feel in order to maintain the ultimate. Need which is attachment and acceptance and connection. Yes. Love us little pieces of us just drop off or have to get abandoned so that we can have the higher need met, which is connection and a psychologist or a guide will help you to reattach to all these last pieces so that you can have the thing that you really want, which is fulfillment and real connection because of who you are not because of who you pretended.

Dr. Elizabeth Fedrick: Absolutely. I tell my clients that so often that all of us are really working to avoid rejection and abandonment. Those are our biggest fears and pretty much all behaviors are motivated by that. And so you're exactly right. That connection is crucial. Thank you so much for being here. Where can our viewers find out [00:11:00] more about your social media 

Lisa-Marie: website through my Instagram, which is Dr.

Lisa Marie Del Rio. Okay, perfect. 

Dr. Elizabeth Fedrick: Well, thank you so much, Dr. Del Rio. It was great 

Lisa-Marie: having you. You too. Bye now. Bye. 

Dr. Elizabeth Fedrick: And thank you all for tuning into this episode of calm, cooling, connected. Please make sure to find us on Facebook and Instagram and also make sure to rate and subscribe to our podcast so that others can discover our content as well.

Thank you again for joining us on this episode of calm, cooling, connected. .