I’m going to Get Ready, as the phrase goes. It doesn’t matter if you have a plan for what you’re going to do that day or not, the point is that you Get Ready so that you’re ready for whatever the day may bring. This is a pretty optimistic attitude. You know something’s going to happen today, so you want to be ready when it does.
Mainly this involves improving my physical appearance so that I don’t give the hypothetical people I’ll be interacting with later today a reason to worry about me. Why is it that unkempt hair and a scraggly beard is associated with mental instability? I often think the length of my beard is a direct representation of how little I’ve taken care of myself since the last time I trimmed it, typically involving long periods of time thinking about tea and code rather than about how crazy I might look. So maybe there’s some truth to that. Insanity is born in obsession.
I’m just trying to be myself here, you know? We all know that’s not easy.
So here’s how to Get Ready.
Trim the beard. You can skip this if you don’t have a beard. Think about how much the people in your life (Alex) will appreciate the new sense of order in that section of your face.
Now turn your attention northward to the hair. Nothing to do about that but take a shower. We don’t need to go into details here, you know the drill.
Feel refreshed after the shower. Go on with your other Getting Ready tasks. But feel better.
I guess Getting Ready really is about taking care of ourselves, not just our appearance but also our minds. Putting ourselves in order, removing weeds and overgrown patches in beards and in brains. Reconnecting with things that are out of balance, parts of ourselves that we have neglected while focused on our other concerns. The maintenance of the soul is a spiritual task, and we become observant gardeners, helping it to grow the way it needs to grow, toward the sun.
But if a guy has a crazy beard once in a while you can’t blame him. Kids playing in the woods don’t care how they look. Sometimes we’re just having too much fun.
Published 6 May 2016
Kevin McGillivray is a web developer, writer, and teacher from Wisconsin. He writes about creativity, mindfulness, code, and tea.