How important do you think it is to be consistent? I think I assumed for a long time that of course a person should remain more or less the same person all of the time.
But! Walt Whitman:
Do I contradict myself?
Very well then I contradict myself,
(I am large, I contain multitudes.)
When something changes in yourself, it’s easy to think that you’re somehow “off” from normal. You write every day or you don’t feel like writing at all; your interests wander; your outward expression gets more or less colorful; your day to day mood rises or falls; you go from joyful to cynical and back again; your productivity trades places with your diversion; you venture into, or retreat from, social life.
I’ve come to find this exciting. Everything about you can ride a wave, and every wave can have different frequency and amplitude. These aspects of your personality move in and out of phase, sometimes correlating and sometimes diverging, like a neverending Phil Collins drum fill. Or like periodic cicadas, or I dunno, the background on my web site. So you’re never the same person twice, but you’re consistently a product of the same ranges of many values playing against each other. (I have a teammate at work who recognized that she operates seasonally, with certain patterns of thought and behavior depending on the time of year.)
What a wonderful thing it is to see and accept that even if you trace a single big curve at the furthest zoom level, you can wiggle around quite a bit on the way.
A number of you said nice things because I mentioned the effect of nice things; I now owe you a number of letters!