In the past week or so I've sat down at my computer feeling like I really wanted to write something but as soon as I start typing or get just a few words down I realize how garbled all the information in my mind is and I have relatively promptly given up and moved on to other activities leaving that nagging feeling in the back of my mind that I need or want to write something. I just don't know quite what.
I guess for the purposes of humoring myself, I'll describe my mind!! Which is kind of scary at the best of times. On this particular occasion the best analogy I can dream up would be...........
A tumbleweed. A mass of sticks in a ball, easily disturbed by a gentle wind, floating over the earth picking up bits and pieces of leaves, plastic, twigs etc as it goes. Never stopping for long in one location before the wind or a person upset its resting place sending it on it's way again. Or another way of describing my mind would be kind of like a mirage. The fine line that separates reality from fantasy having blurred and become almost indistinguishable. It's kind of a weird way of describing it. Things are muddled and hazy! But in a good way. I think!!
And with that..... here are a couple of pictures of one of the most beautiful spots on the entire west-coast.
It's funny how you move (far) away from home and hope that maybe, just maybe, you can go out without having had a shower for groceries, or wear your gym pants to school or something completely awful like that and you feel like you should be able to do so without panicking about running into people you know. At school, it's obvious you're going to see people you know, but we are all in the same boat and a lot of people just dress casually and comfortably and don't stress about having everything be in place. Then what happens? You're en-route back, eating meatballs in Ikea after having slept on and off the preceding hours, and feeling less than glamorous and what should happen? You see one of your former students parents and quickly feel the need to hide behind that bright red sofa to your left and quickly mess up your hair, making it cover your eyes and then you slowly pass the individual trying not to look suspicious as bump into the nearby dining room display sending the vase with fake flowers flying. It's embarrassing but at least you managed to keep your identity a secret and it only cost the $45 for the crystal vase and fake flowers.
Ok, ok... so that is a gross exaggeration of something that actually seems to happen quite commonly. So my question is, why should I care so much to avoid a possible interaction with someone I know and actually like? Yes, I felt (and pretty much looked!) like I had just got out of bed but why should that matter? So, I thought, and thunk some more. A couple of other things happened in the next 24 hours and my thoughts remained far away from fake flowers.
So question number two which should hopefully answer question number one - why does people's perception of us matter so much and dictate our actions and what we do? And why is it that those guidelines we set for ourselves of perception - both visual and verbal - can vary so much from one person to the next? And is it wrong to follow/use those unconsciously (or maybe they are conscious?) guidelines we've put in place for ourselves? I guess another question stems from all of this too. Are you really being yourself when you're with other people or are you being what they want you to be or maybe you're playing a reverse role and challenging that person on every point. But aside from that....are you truly being you or are you just syphoning out things and showing an edited, proofread version of yourself to your audience so that you are able to least offend those around you and not create controversy? Are you doing what you are doing because you want to be doing it or are you doing it because someone else suggested or recommended it?
Lots of questions! Like it or not, if you examine yourself and your day to day activities, it's almost a 100% guarantee that you can find in some area something that you do that has not been a conscious decision on your own part but instead has been something that has been stipulated by the society in which you function.
Take for instance when someone asks you a question about their hair or clothes or something as mundane as "did you have fun at my party last night?". What if you didn't have fun? Are you going to say "actually, I really didn't enjoy your party." ? I highly doubt you would, I wouldn't. But maybe you should?
Some food for thought anyways.....
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