Every embarrassing act we do brings us closer to taking ourselves less seriously.
Well, at least that’s what I’d rationalise and tell myself whenever I do something silly. It is always infinitely easier to travel the path of least resistance but that is also the path of mediocrity or the path of least rewards. While overcoming resistance may not always bring about just rewards, I suspect that the mere act of stepping outside of one’s comfort zone – or, perhaps, more accurately, the testing of one’s willingness to step outside of one’s comfort zone – creates an initial link which may, hopefully, grow into a chain.
Such acts also affix tangibility onto one’s thoughts, ideas and intentions by bringing the cerebral into the physical, which may be more important than we give it credit for when we look deep into ourselves to figure out who we have been, who we are and who we will be/want to be.
After all, if we accept that the individual is a dual concept formed by one’s acts and one’s intentions – which is eerily reminiscent of the twin pillars of criminal liability, namely actus reus (guilty act) and mens reas (guilty mind) – then it goes without saying that the mental conception we have of ourselves always, always, represents only parts of the jigsaw that constitutes the essence of one’s personhood. Granted, physical acts may be done on a whim or may not bear any apparent motive, but the intention to do certain acts, e.g. to reach into your wallet and offer donations, belie subterranean patterns of behaviour. These patterns – if ever we could map them out, would form a mural that would roughly depict the outlines of one’s personhood.
And looking at the outline of my personhood, I am wondering if I should stay the course and follow the blueprint of conservativeness or to rip the map and stride forth without fear or favour.