I’ve always questioned authority and the conventions of society to the extent that upon extreme analysis and criticism, many aspects seem pointless and arbitrary. I certainly recognize the importance of having and following rules and I understand the significance of conformity, but my general viewpoint on these things is very objective in that regard. Rather than feeling a part of the system of conventions, I feel more like an outside observer, further promoting my perception of analysis.
I don’t recognize this tendencies a bad thing in general, although it has caused me some difficulty in understanding and adopting to. Now that I’m moving past the stage of rebellion that it has caused, I see many benefits. What I’m understanding further is the underlying cause of this tendency, as well as how I can utilize all the aspects of my personality as an asset rather than a liability.
I do believe that the better I am able to interact and communicate with others the more I will be able to understand and express myself. That is something that is extremely important in my life at this point. I know that it has often been my lack of good communication that has gotten me into trouble in the past and possibly contributed to my critique of authority, and aspects of society that so many people seem to take for granted. In this regard I believe the more I communicate, the more I grow.
I spent the majority of my life considering who I am, the nature of my self identity. When I was young, until about age 13, I understood my identity in terms of my mom and dad. Both of my parents are educators, my mother at the elementary level, and my dad at the collegiate level, so I highly identified with education. Until the age of 13, I had adopted many of the values of my parents, things like using reason and compassion, being tolerant, considerate of others, and acting with integrity and self-discipline.
Throughout my adolescence, my identity was shaped and reshaped by the friends I hung around with, and more fundamentally by the culture at large. As I rebelled against authority, I developed a sense of ego, believing I needed to gain acceptance by being and doing things that attracted attention. This led me down a path of insolence and misbehavior, causing me to get into trouble and seek deep within myself for answers…