Society isn’t really that big on uniqueness. Yes, it claims to be; but really what it offers via culture and opportunity are to fit and find success in (if you can).
Since we’re all always shown what success has to look like, we’re all busy searching for the best ways we can fit.
Those that realize they’ll never fit are artists. No, I’m not talking about painters or sculptors; throughout history, artists have shaped our world and ideals in powerful ways simply by being true to their individual selves and perspectives.
What’s incredibly ironic, paradoxical, and counterintuitive about having a unique perspective is that somehow that’s exactly what cuts through and connects on the deepest levels with those who see or hear it.
The more specific and real you are in showing how you experience the world, the more general and widespread the connection.
And even though we still live in the husk of a world taught to remain desperate for mainstream normalcy and pre-approved success, in truth our current time is tailor-made for artists, for outliers, for weirdos, and for all who won’t fit any mold.
I encourage everyone today to see themselves as some sort of artist. One’s where perspective meets natural talent.
But I’d especially encourage you to see yourself that way. Your perspective and circumstances allow you to understand two worlds at once in ways no one else really can: the contrary world of conformity you face each day, and the world of those like you (somewhere out there) who desperately need what you have to share.
So find a way that works for you to practice sharing your unique perspective over time. You’ll be amazed by what happens when you do . . . if you’re steady and consistent enough for those that might connect to start to anticipate the value you bring.
Attention is a scarce resource these days, so this process of connection might take some time. But art isn’t a zero-sum game; you’re not competing with anyone else . . . you’re simply reaching out to find your people as you narrow in on the specifics of how you might best share.
“It’s very hard to have ideas. It’s very hard to put yourself out there, it’s very hard to be vulnerable, but those people who do that are the dreamers, the thinkers and the creators. They are the magic people of the world.”
― Amy Poehler