There was this thought I had these days honestly, of being scared not to be original… Don’t be afraid to create and express more of who you are, even if what you do or how you do it is not a 100% novelty to the world. It can’t be! Everything is in some way or another interconnected… One big web… of intricate pathways. Leading here. Then there. Going to a dead end of ideas eventually… And then reuniting with another. Our human nature works this way and this is how we evolve, us and the world.
So, instead of creating NO value waiting around for that “Evrika” moment or idea and thinking of that pure original way of doing it, you could create incremental value or business or art that could benefit you (as you expressed it in your own reinvented way) and the world. Nothing happens in a vacuum anyway. Divide. Extrapolate. Create. Inspire or some other such variation. That’s how it happens. The “originality” we are able to create is a mere variation of something else. It inspires from something… It’s your touch to something most probably done before.
The reality is nothing is 100% original. Ever. Not in this world we are living in, unless you can reinvent the wheel or something. How could it be? Everything happens in relation to everything else, everything is a piece to a much larger whole, and every whole is just a piece to something else.
So why is everyone so scared about not being 100% original? Is it a new trend just to put forward this thought? Does it sound nice and cool that someone aims to be “100% original” and then it masks the fact that they create nothing with the simple excuse it is not purely “original”? This is not how we evolve.
A lot of people, I think – not being a lot of people I can’t possible know – fret and fuss over trying to be so unique that they end up not doing anything at all. How silly… Progress is not build this way. Progress is build by ideas building upon each other, it’s a team work in the end, a variation of interpretations and expressions. Individual breakthroughs are rare, collective incremental creativity is what can move us forward in the meantime.
But I know and fully understand: Being a cliché, or an imitator, or whatever else is not a thing for example an artist wants to be. An artist wants to express his or her self in a most unique fashion. Most art is about self expression. Self expression is about expressing yourself, not someone else’s mind. If it looks like you’ve plagiarized someone else’s work, whatever work, on whatever platform, that’s not cool.
Thinking about your next killer novel idea, or next masterpiece, or what else you could use to paint a self portrait – thinking, thinking, thinking about your personal weave, whether or not it’s already been woven, whether or not your weaving process is different enough from the last guy who vaguely resembled how you pictured weaving that you inside – and not doing anything. That’s not cool nor constructive either…
There’s nothing wrong with striving to be 100% original and create breakthroughs, of course. It is admirable, BUT don’t limit yourself only to that. Inspire, reinterpret, revisit and put a personal touch on what is out there already if you feel like.
If you are considering to put one of your feet forward, turning inward, opening your eyes and examining the walls of your imagination, running your finger against those walls, blindly, to bleed, to feel, to listen, to hear what is happening there, within yourself, grabbing what you’ve found with two hands, clawing dimples into that dusty sponge that is you and dragging it out into the open sun to share your discovery with the world – then just do it. Express yourself. Do it. Don’t wait. Don’t worry whether it has been done before. If it’s from inside of you, bring it out. If you know it’s yours, who cares whether it was once also someone else’s? Chances are, it was.
If you’ve got an idea, don’t worry about whether it’s original. Just jump on that ideas shoulders and let it take you as far as it will (it applies to business too, by the way).