Who am I?
In Year 9 I was given a test, we were all given a test. An abysmal computer programme designed as part of redundant career advice to help you determine ‘what you want to be’. As a side note, it’s a fantastic example of the awful intersection to date between technology and education. Technology for education designed by the educators, not the technologists, which in no small part explains the high interest and large valuations of new educationally focused tech start-ups. But I digress…
At the end of a series of ‘psychological’ questions, my results were in. And boy oh boy was I pleased. It turns out that my two ideal life careers consisted of:
1) Fence erecter – whilst I’m sure it is a pleasing and enjoyable job, wasn’t what I’m going for
2) Cinema attendant – the rigours of seating people by torch light may well be challenging, but not quite what I was thinking
As ridiculous as it may well sound, these were my results. Perhaps I’m barking up the wrong tree in starting a business rather than perfecting my fence positioning or ability to find row J, seat 32, but even if that’s true, it begs a bigger question. Why? Why was there that need? Why did someone not only create such a system of career placement but why did anyone buy it or administer it? Furthermore why did they deem there to be any good achieved in doing so?
Perhaps it’s because we need to. We need to know who we are. What we are supposed to be. Why we are here.
There is an intrinsic need within each and every one of us to not be lost. Not to be alone. Not to lack purpose. But in the multiple and endless attempts to define ourselves by our job, our partner, our friends or our appearance, is there the potential that we further distance ourselves from the clarity we require to really understand who we are.
To be lost is to be afraid. To be without purpose or reason is to fail to exist – to fail to matter. But fail to matter to whom? To what?
So we define. We box. We follow.
We have taken the decision to jump in. Release that which gives us comfort and purpose in an attempt to make our own. This makes us no better or worse than anyone and at the end of it all, we may well be as lost or found as anyone else.
The framework of the world we live in offers endless comfort and security but what, just what if that same framework offers a cage that is invisible to all. A prescription that we do not see or feel ourselves consuming, but that acts in the same way – to medicate us away from really finding who we are.
I have no idea. None what so ever. Even contemplating the idea either way is a terrifying prospect.
There are those times where you feel you fit, and it’s cosy and warm. I’m drawn back to think of the game as a child, the one with many holes, each with their own shape. I guess the whole ‘square peg in a round hole’ can be much more than an expression.
Perhaps we’re all just looking to fit our personal shape into that pre set framework. It’s satisfying and rewarding and comforting. But maybe we don’t need to fit our square peg in a round hole, but instead start trying to figure out if we’re really a square, or if there is a round hole at all.
There’s a taste, a sense, and a purpose that puts us here and that keeps us going. Maybe the secret is trying a little more to be happy not fitting now and again, with things not seeming ok, not working out, to allow us to better figure out who we are not, so that we can understand a little bit more of who we are. Maybe? Maybe not.
Thanks for reading.