01 July 2007

Link of the day: "I Am Worm, Hear Me Roar"

I read an interesting New York Times article about reinventing identity. It is a response to the recent finding that the eldest child has a higher IQ than his/her younger siblings. Children in a family try to differentiate themselves and IQ is only one out of many ways. People reinvent themselves because they are marginalized in some way (basically everyone except a few people with supreme confidence or arrogance depending on your opinion).
At times, adult life can feel like an extended exercise in escaping high school, a scramble to shed wallflower memories, to show all those snickering swells what happens when a worm grows wings or a spine (or a hedge fund).
One of my favorite parts of the article talks about how reinventing the self is a healthy psychological skill.
And psychological research suggests that this ability can be a sign of mental resilience, of taking control of your own story rather than being trapped by it.

This statement connects back to one of my favorite quotes by Charles Dickens in David Copperfield: "Whether I shall turn out to be the hero of my own life, or whether that station will be held by anybody else, these pages must show." I feel like I am still basically the same person I was when I started college, with some additions. There were some large blank spots on my identity slate and I've finally started to fill those in.

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