Who are you? How do your peers and community view you? Thinking through the answers to those questions in an identity essay is a way to explore, discover and share your own identity perceptions. The purpose of an identity essay is to answer questions about who you are, how you perceive yourself and how others perceive you as well. For an identity essay to have impact, it should cover different facets of your identity from your name's origin to your character, principles and values. Your friends, family, community and culture are also part of your identity. They are a part of shaping your identity as well and an integral part to your essay. Exploring your personal life thoroughly helps you understand the impact of people and experiences in forming your own identity. A well-written identity essay tells the reader how you view yourself as well as the role in finding that identity related to the people and experiences in your life.
First, compose the thesis for your essay. The thesis is the central theme on which your whole essay will be based on. As you create your thesis, think about what aspect of your identity you want to explore. This thought process could include analyzing your cultural background or how you feel your peers view you as a person. Determine the relevance of the thesis idea you choose by analyzing how much it has contributed to the formation of your current identity.
Next, prepare an essay outline. In this outline, consider and lay out a plan what you plan to include about yourself, your beliefs and your family to organize the overall structure and content of your essay.
Write the first draft of your essay after you complete the outline. Start with the introduction revolving around your thesis and explain what you will be exploring in the essay. Fill out the body of the essay with more information and examples that provide background to the theme. Conclude the essay by looking back on and recapping what you included in the other sections.
Revise the essay as needed to create connections among ideas and a clear picture of yourself. Add transition phrases like "on the other hand" and "similarly" to illustrate relationships between included concepts and details. Develop your essay with strong details to express your thoughts on your identity and how you think people perceive you. Look at all the aspects of your life that contribute to your identity. Doing this will help strengthen the essay with supporting details that engage your reader.
Review your essay after finishing. Have a friend or peer proofread it for spelling, grammar and clarity. While many written essays would also require a look at facts presented and research, an identity essay may also need that same reader to give you feedback on how you present yourself in the essay. If the editor you choose is open to the process, also ask her to give you feedback on the identify your portray for yourself in the essay. Integrate edits into your essay as you find them necessary and appropriate and then create the final draft.