What it means to lose my self identity
..or the lack thereof.
For many of us, the first thing that we look out for when we are judging others is how they conduct themselves visually — without prior interaction. One does not necessarily have to be well dressed to create a good impression neither should one be sloppy. However, it definitely shows a certain degree of self-respect for one has for himself. For instance, if you were to show up to work that mandates you to work in formal business attire, but instead you come in with flip flops or with an unironed shirt with wrinkles and creases all over the shirt, what sort impression are you trying to give off to your colleagues who adhered to the requirements? Would your superiors be pleased with that? You could be the boss of the company for all it matters, but what kind of image are you portraying if you don’t walk the talk itself?
Clothes maketh the man. To put it bluntly, how we portray our bearings is how much we respect ourselves because, at the end of the day, we are all going to judge others based on their appearance, if we have no prior interaction with them, whether we like it or not.
This might be anecdotal but when I was first conscripted into military just like every other able-bodied young Singaporean son, I noticed that people were treating me negatively in a matter that I’ve never encountered before after they’ve identified that I’m an NSF based on my appearance (shaved head and all) or perhaps my uniform. I guess the somewhat nonchalant attitude towards NSFs in this country is still very prevalent despite all the things that the mass media has been trying to portray.
Then again, I was also at one of the lowest point in my life at that time, cause y’know, being drafted into military involuntarily for two years isn’t exactly what most people take pleasure in and assimilation to military life is certainly not an easy task for me; your freedom, your dignity, your self-worth, your comfort zone, your individuality is all stripped away from you and instead, you are part of a hivemind, taught to follow, not to think. Never question, never ask. You’re serving the country, the country is not serving you.
My mind has become dull after all these shenanigans.
Can I ever be normal again?