How much would I change?

If I was given do-over, how much of myself would I change? I would likely change my habit of procrastination first. It is one habit I’ve paid most dearly for throughout my life. I don’t often have major problems in getting work done but my procrastination is responsible for lower finishing standards and self-inflicted damage under aggravated stresses from tighter deadlines. Its not about the discipline or the will, I don’t know what happens; I get distracted easily and wander off in unpredictable tangents which seem more important at the time but gradually lose their value in retrospect – often replaced by guilt.

A sketchup rendering of a farm house for a friend.It sounds more like a problem with my ability to focus but getting focused isn’t a problem for me; staying focused is. And then everything comes right back at getting easily distracted – another circle of life (ha ha). But its not a totally lost case, there is a flicker of light at the end of the tunnel – a minor redeeming grace if you will. The bane of my productivity, this vocational wanderlust also suffers me exposure to our magnificent social diversity. I get to do things I would never have done under normal circumstance because they aren’t within the realm of my established proficiency.

Most of my musings on ‘what-if’ scenarios end up with only one transparent deduction. I would end up exactly in the same place even if I was given ‘do-overs’ for most significant turning points of my life. The process of making decisions in my mind will remain the same and hence my choices will match the ones already made in other hypothetical passes through the same life. There are many out there who fervently believe that things would be much different if they were given the same choices again but I don’t see how. At least not for the significant choices. We may get away with milder variations, whole wheat vs. white bread but stuff like our choices of partners or careers will likely remain the same no matter how many times we are led past the same thresholds by our choices hitherto.

Another rendering of a sketchup design of a portable food cart for a friend in fast food business.Not unless the changes begin with the time and space of my birth or my genealogical heritage, life will try to oscillate right back to the same equilibrium of varied mental states defining me today. But with significant changes beginning before my birth, the result would not be me but a new creation without any connection to the entity I call me. If the changes are significant enough and beyond my conscious control, the resulting personality would likely be different enough to have no connection with me. And defeating any practical purpose of our ‘what-if’ musing.

Makes me wonder if there’s a tipping point in our choices at which changes in our lives create a new entity. Anything more and we become a different person and anything less we retain our basic personality while redefining our lives in ways subtle enough not to significantly alter our persona. Is it possible? I’d like to think so. Can we identify these turning points as we encounter them in our daily routines? Perhaps not. Its a ripple effect. Even small ripples traveling out from their origin can create disturbances enough to alter the existence of a free-floating mote on the surface. Despite the bravado, I don’t think its possible for a mote to rise up against the ripple and to change the ripple’s nature or stand resolute and unchanged. It would be akin to a coracle altering the course of a tsunami.

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