2011  April 6

When Leaps Are Made

A wise legend in the creative field told me how in his long life he realized there were three basic reasons that he had ever made any significant creative leaps. He enumerated them matter-of-factly:

  1. Having no experience to call on in his past history upon which to base his next move. Being, what he called, “Completely clueless.”
  2. The sands of time in the hourglass going from a few tens of thousand grains to just a dozen or less. When time is running out, there is no recourse but to wish for a miracle and be really, really lucky at that moment.
  3. It’s a matter of life or death. The single decision to be made affected the future health of his company and would take it up or at least stable, or instead all the way down into the abyss.

I thought his perspective to be a bit stark, but in his discrete thoughts I found a snippet in my mind from a sci-fi book (yes there’s life inspiration in sci-fi books sometimes) I read for pleasure while in college that went:

You are
What you do
When it counts.

In summary, we are extraordinary as the situation demands. Luckily the situation in one’s life fluctuates all the time from the challengingly hard to the oh-so-soft to the largely unnoticed, and wonderful quiet of, just plain living. JM

John Steakley: “You are, what you do, when it counts.”

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