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Small Footprint Identity

Once in a while I do something that threatens my status as a minimalist. It was pretty clear cut when I traveled the world with nothing but a backpack and had nothing back home, but now it's not so clear. I wear the same shirt every day, but I have real estate in a few different places with my friends.

Identities are comfortable because they give us a way to describe ourselves to the world. We can say a lot about ourselves in just a few words, and we also have some assurance that even if our identity is an unusual one, it will be accepted.

This is true even of negative identities. There are people whose main identity is "likable unlucky guy" and those people will actually feel more comfortable when things don't work out for them than when things do.

The fundamental problem with identities is that they are constraining. Because it's uncomfortable to do things that don't fall within the sphere of your stereotype, you'll be less likely to branch out, even if it's best for you.

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