Do you prefer to be in-formed or out-formed?

Painting within the painting

Have you noticed how some of the things we read empower our beliefs and our notions about who we are, while others challenge them? I like to differentiate those two types of content as in-formation - which maintains and adds layers onto our old ideas, and out-formation - which challenges, reshapes, or breaks previous beliefs.

 

Children & the elderly

 

I also find it interesting that in-formation happens naturally in children - they are like sponges and become ‘formed’ by everything they see, read or hear.

 

And, in some ways, out-formation is natural for elderly people. I have noticed that none or very few of the older people I’ve met are shy. At the same time, shyness is quite easy to spot in teenagers and young adults. It seems to me that there is a point at which the individuals decide ‘it doesn’t make sense for me to be shy anymore’, and they stop doing shyness. It is that same out-formation process that I am curious about - and how you can reshape the patterns that you don’t like about yourself into new, more useful ones.

 

There is too much (mis)in-formation out there already. My aim is therefore to out-form.