Role Bleeding (n.) - Each area of your life typically has you fulfilling a certain set of expectations based on the people or situation. Your specific role can be consciously chosen, assigned by the group, or even unconsciously fallen into based on your past.
Role Bleeding occurs when the role from one area spills into another. Sometimes this is healthy -- sometimes not. The examination and ability to consciously decide your role is the important piece.
Looking at Some Examples
Mary gets a lot of meaning by being a mother to her two children. She also tends to mother her coworkers without even realizing she's doing it.
Sam is a grade school teacher. He runs his classroom with assertive discipline. When he see his friends doing things they shouldn't, he often corrects them just the same as he would a child in his classroom.
These are both examples of role bleeding.
Seeing This In Yourself
Take a moment to label the role you fulfill in each of your social spheres -- or even the multiple roles you fulfill with each individual friend. You will often have multiple roles within the same group.
Notice how your role shifts based on the group or person. If your role is always the same, it's likely you are letting your primary role bleed over from one area of your life into another.
Take some time today to think about this term and the roles you take on in each area of your life.
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