I’m not certain who originally created this meme. That person is, however, entirely correct.
You may be yourself all the time. Except when your boss only needs one aspect of you. Except when your friend needs another side of you. Except when being yourself means breaking social norms, or worse, laws.
We dedicate thousands of hours and tens of thousands of words to advice on how to be better members of society.
And right now, I don’t know if I’m failing or succeeding. I’m also trying desperately not to care.
After all, I blog. I want to blog more. (Some would say I NEED to blog more.) Most of the time, I blog about opinions on stuff I see online. Why?
Because it’s easy. It’s safe.
I don’t have to slice of a piece of my soul and risk baring it to the entire world. After all, opinions change. Sometimes slowly, sometimes quickly, but they change.
/\ Actual footage of some of my opinions changing. /\
Basically if a random internet stranger cares to tear my opinion apart? The wounds only go skin deep.
Blog: What Is It?
Often? The blog is merely a series of what may be termed personal essays. I set my fingers to the keyboard, type up an opinion and send it off into the ether. Then I wait, and wonder if I’ve said something that mattered to anyone but spammers?
So what happens? I run out of steam. I don’t know what to write about. I don’t want to write about my principles, because I have learned to fear the reactions of total strangers on the interent, when I actively refuse to fear the physical strangers I encounter every day.
I put stock in posts like Virginia Woolf: There Are Way Too Many Personal Essays Out There. I mean, how do I know if I’m “[using] this medium from genuine inspiration because it best embodies the soul of [my] thought.”? Or if I’m just rambling.
In the end, I don’t know. I just have to hope what I’m typing helps.
Why Opinion Is Safer Than Principle
We all have opinions. Some can be as simple as whether the blue shirt or the red shirt is better today. Frankly, the only one who truly cares what shirt you wear or what you eat for breakfast is you.
Then we have our principles. Those codes and convictions we hold so strongly they guide the ship of our lives. And I frequently only talk about principles when I have an ill-informed opinion on a principle I’m struggling to understand or implement in my life. I rarely speak of the genuine challenges and difficulties I face in learning a principle. I only share what may be “acceptable.”
I may change this as I can. To start with:
I am a faithful, attending member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. (I am not a perfect member.)
I don’t like talking about myself in-depth to the internet.
ADHD makes it far easier to spout off to people one-on-one or in person.
I may or may not come off as a know-it-all. Blame what you will. It may have something to do with how I was taught to write, and the fact that I defend myself emotionally from being wrong. (Last I checked ALL humans do this.)
So yes, this is a personal essay. Yes, I may or may not have gotten very personal.
Just admitting I have difficulty writing this is a step towards genuine, I suppose.
Now I’m going to go make bread.