Friday, January 16, 2009

Identity

Hubs and I were having what I thought was a really interesting discussion this week about identity. We were talking about how the choices that each person makes, collectively, determine who that person is. And how your identity can totally change with even a single, isolated choice.

For exmple, take the quiet, unassuming accountant who one day goes crazy and shoots up a room full of his co-workers. Now, until that day, he was the sweetest, most law-abiding citizen around, right? Never had a parking ticket. Didn't beat his wife. Brought a bagged lunch every day. He was not the kind of person who would do such a thing. But after that moment, that instant when he made that choice, he was. For the rest of his life, he will be the kind of person that you can't predict, the kind of person who might do something crazy. And this will be the case even if he NEVER does anything crazy ever again. Right?

You can go through your whole life making the right choices, building the kind of identity that you want for yourself. But if you aren't vigilant, if you aren't consciously deciding every day to live the life you want and be who you want to be, it can all go straight to the crapper before you know it. The example above is extreme, but it illustrates the point well, I think.

You decide anew every day who you want to be. And you have to remember who that person is with every choice you make. Otherwise, looking in the mirror is a surprise.

No comments: