conflict

November 3, 2015

What do you do in a world that emphasizes broad and shallow when you're wired to be deep and focused? I've struggled with this tension for a long time. Well, more acutely since becoming an artist and entering a field where self-promotion is required. I don't know if it is just a particularly American cultural trait to be big and broad and as numbers focused as possible, or if it is also a value reinforced by the nature of social media, but I have found this emphasis to be often at odds with how I work and how I best influence others.

By nature, I am a deep thinker. And I like connecting in deep ways with others. I am built to influence in this capacity. But this deep, thoughtful approach usually takes time and intention, and isn't something that can be reduced to a quick formula broadcast to the masses. Everything I create, whether art or written content, always comes from this deeper place of knowing and being. It is a place that takes time to get to. It is like a miner descending into the depths of a mine to excavate for jewels, and then returning to the surface to share what he has found.

I desire to make art or write things that cause people to go to a deeper place as well, one that leaves them challenged, or inspired, or changed. But the process of mining is not quick or fast, and is almost at the opposite end of the spectrum from the cultural norm of 24/7 content being broadcast to an ever-widening audience.

So I live with this tension daily…honoring the nature of who I am and living it, because it has value and the ability to impact others in a unique way, and wrestling with the demands of the culture, which tend to run counter to a process requiring depth, patience, and stillness.

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