I came across a heartening speech by artist, strategist, and interviewer extraordinaire Debbie Millman, delivered to the graduating class at San Jose State University. The talk is based on her anthological work titled “Fail Safe”. Her work explores such existential skills as living with uncertainty, embracing the unfamiliar, allowing for not knowing, and cultivating what John Keats has famously termed “Negative Capability”. John Keats endures as one of the most influential creative geniuses humanity has produced. In his words Negative capability is the willingness to embrace uncertainty, live with mystery, and make peace with ambiguity.
After taking deep dive into the her anthological work, I have come to realise that most of us follow a safe path. I remember few months out of college , I was mulling over all possible safe options to take. I lingered at various intersections of these safe options trying to visualise deep into my future contemplating the choice between secure and uncertain, between the creative and the logical.
Every once in a while often when we least expect it , we encounter someone more courageous, someone who choose to strive for something (which to us) seemed unrealistically unattainable and elusive. Often we are in awe and think these people as lucky. In fact , luck has nothing to do with it. If you ask me , It’s really all about the strength of their imagination. It is about how they constructed the possibilities for their life. In short , there is no need to define impossible before it was even possible.
Sometimes , we get compelled to consider what was reasonable ignorer to safeguard our economical future. Even though, we want the whole world but think prudently to compromise towards something which appears to be realistically feasible.
“The computer will do anything within its abilities but it will do nothing unless commanded to do so. People are also same , We like to operate within our abilities. Computer has a fixed code but our abilities are limited only by our perceptions“
I recommend the following course of action for those who are just beginning their careers or those who are reconfiguring mid way: –
If you imagine less, less will be what you undoubtedly deserve. Do what you love, and don’t stop until you get what you love. Work as hard as you can, imagine immensities, don’t compromise, and don’t waste time. Start now. Not 20 years from now, not two weeks from now. Now.
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