I’ve been watching quite a bit of Tom Scott recently. One of his videos, I won’t link to which as his channel is worth exploring, discusses (though not in these exact terms) the ideas of minimalism and identity.
His idea of identity, very much aligns with my own philosophy. See Tom has, from what I’ve been able to discern, taken the stance that who he is centers around the data that he’s produced. What I would phrase as ‘The pattern he’s weaved in the data.’
By producing work and then creating backups and keeping those up-to-date, he’s able to preserve his identity. His stories and work are all saved in a digital format and saved in secure locations. So while there’s no physical link to his past, no avatar as it were, to create a symbolic link; the product of his work at the time still stands.
In a similar vein, I’ve recently found myself out of work. Faced with the prospect of moving, and looking at the sheer volume of stuff I need to move (part of which isn’t even mine). I’ve decided that I need to cut down on my clutter. I’d taken this hard at first, and actually still am. There’s a sentimental value that we attach to physical icons. So the airsoft stuff that I’m offloading, while tied to good memories, isn’t actually required. There are pictures of me with my kit in various stages, and I always have my memories. The sanguine feeling of letting go will soon pass, and I’ll still have my records of this period, and of course, my stories.
I’m surprised, looking at it now, that I wasn’t sadder when I left trucking. Though in retrospect I was also furious with Swift for how they were treating me and the other drivers. But that aspect of my life still exists in the stories I’m sharing here, it’s not gone, it’s not that it’s no longer part of ‘me,’ it’s just not a physical part of my life now.
This is a stark contrast to my departure from my previous job. Wherein I wasn’t angry, I’m not angry, I saw the signs coming quite a while in advance and had accepted my fate. It isn’t to say that I was at all prepared, or that it didn’t suck, but I was much more resigned in how I handled it than my dismissal from say, SOE. That, was a trainwreck and a half. I compare those two only because they were both my ideal jobs, and finding anything to match will be difficult. I’d wanted to work in two industries since I was a kid, Information Security, and video games. I was fortunate to get my go at both.