I’ve never really made New Year’s Resolutions. I don’t necessarily intend to now – “resolve” is rather strong. Rather, I would like to use 2019 to practice two related things – moving slower, and going deeper.
I have an inclination to move fast and look ahead, always. Whether it’s reading through a book, watching time to the end an event, or looking ahead to the next project in school, work, or personal life, I often feel I’m rushing the now, only to get to the next and feel the same way.
Part of the rush is genuinely seeing that there is so much that I don’t know, and not all that much time to do much about it. But, part of it is just trying to speed up that experience so that I can claim to have had that experience – I’ve read that book, taken that class, visited that city, done that kind of work, etc.
Moving fast isn’t necessarily bad, but often I’m moving fast for the wrong reasons.
A large part of my identity lies in being recognized as being “smart”, largely as recognized by other people. I’m working on that, but it’s a reality about who I’ve been and who I am.
A simple way of maintaining a perceived state of being “smarter” than others is simply knowing more. In a shallow way, this can be easy to achieve – simply try to learn a little about a lot. While there’s value in breadth of knowledge, and there’s certainly an authentic part of myself that truly likes learning the new & novel, it’s also a bit of a cheat. For example, if person A knows twice as much as person B about nine out of ten subjects, but person B knows 100x more than person A on that one subject, who is “smarter”?
I don’t think there’s an answer, but it illustrates a potential lack of authenticity when it comes to measuring (myself) as being smarter just because I know about a lot of different things.
Ideas are good, and concrete next steps are helpful for actual progress. So, a few ideas for moving slower and going deeper: