just a thought, Quotables, stuff from my life

In the soul of the artist

Love this so much that I need to place it here so that I never lose it or forget it:

Art is what we call the thing an artist does.

It’s not the medium or the oil or the price or whether it hangs on a wall or you eat it. What matters, what makes it art, is that the person who made it overcame the resistance, ignored the voice of doubt and made something worth making. Something risky. Something human.

Art is not in the eye of the beholder. It’s in the soul of the artist.

~ Seth Godin

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stuff from my life

What I Learned Today

Came across another gem from Seth Godin and I didn’t want to loose track of it so I put here.  For my uses, I substituted the teacher concept here with  “a boss” and grades by “accolades”.

What you can learn from a lousy teacher…

If you have a teacher (of any sort) that you cannot please, that you cannot learn from, that is unwilling to take you where you need to go because he is defending the status quo and demonstrates your failure on whatever report card he chooses to use, you could consider yourself a failure. Or you could remind yourself…

  1. Grades are an illusion
  2. Your passion and insight are reality
  3. Your work is worth more than mere congruence to an answer key
  4. Persistence in the face of a skeptical authority figure is a powerful ability
  5. Fitting in is a short-term strategy, standing out pays off in the long run
  6. If you care enough about the work to be criticized, you’ve learned enough for today
books I've loved, books I've read, stuff from my life

The indispensability of me

I have been listening to Seth Godin’s Linchpin audio book most of this week and I must admit that I have NEVER had such an emotional reaction to a book. It has literally turned everything I thought I knew about myself upside down and it’s been difficult to face at times.

You see, I have spent most of my life (school, career, friends, etc.) trying desperately trying to fit in – BE like everyone else.  Well, I don’t fit in and never will.  I thought that was a bad thing. Turns out NOT a bad thing at all.

I am currently the Community Manager and Creative at FundScrip and I do my work with little or no guidelines, I have no one looking over my shoulder and I certainly have no book of instructions to do my job.  I just do it.  I am free to discover, build and strengthen a fundraising community (which is doing well by the way).

But this week was different, I discovered that I am in the emotional labor business – which is exactly where I should be.  Now I realize that I have always been in this ‘business’ even when it wasn’t the way things were done.  I am not a cog nor would I ever tolerate being one.  I have discovered because of Seth (thank you), that I AM A LINCHPIN and I AM AN ARTIST and have been for a very long time.  My then boss at the Board of Trade of Metropolitan Montreal, Isabelle Hudon, used to call me an artist all the time and I never quite understood what she meant by it.

It explains why employers never really knew what to do with me.  Don’t get me wrong, I did get a job description and my bosses knew that whatever they gave me I would run with it at 1000 miles an hour.  They knew that I would give everything and they knew that I would do with all my heart. I saw things they didn’t, I pushed my ideas forward relentlessly (sometimes to their frustration).  I didn’t always get what I wanted but I did make my mark where ever I worked. I did “the work” without even knowing it.

So I say – Shut up Resistance!  I know who you are now, and especially what you sound like. Make no mistake I will not let you rule me ever again.

P.S. I really really really recommend this book. 🙂

Addition: To be truthful, FundScrip is almost fully staffed by Linchpins.  Our poor Boss! 🙂

my thoughts, new media, stuff from my life

An addiction that’s good for me

What am I referring to?  Audiobooks and Podcasts, of course.

I commute and have done so for over 19 years now.  Either I was going to school or going to work but the one gadget that I always took with me was my yellow Sony Walkman, then silver Sony Discman (darn it, cannot find an image of the one I had) and finally my iPod (I’ve owned 4 now).   I really wasn’t a book reader in those days.  Plus reading on the bus made me nauseous and still does.

Throughout decades of this earbud addiction (i.e., the better part of my teen and adult years), I have noticed a significant shift in the type of things I listen to.  The ’80s and ’90s were no doubt my most musically intense times.  That makes sense because that’s where I was developing my ‘ear’ let just say.

Something happened in the last 5 years though.  My music sensibilities changed drastically and my taste for what came out of my ear buds was also altered.  I started downloading these things called Podcasts when I got my first iPod.  They were informative, interesting and totally addictive.

I remember that I worked for a company that used Mac’s and since I was a total novice with anything to do with Apple, I decided that learning about Mac through Podcasts would be a perfect match.

Fastforward 5 years ahead, I owe a lot of my social media/web and technology knowledge to Podcasts of all sorts.  Oh yes, even foodie podcasts.  I love the idea that as I am walking, shopping and staring out into space (but not really) … I am totally absorbed by what is being pumped direcly into my brain and I hope … learning something.

Speaking of learning something…

Audiobooks are another way I spend communte time.  You name… it from Agatha Christie to Sophie Kinsella to Seth Godin, I am there and I am present &  accounted for.

What’s that?  What did Seth mean?  Well, let back that up 30 seconds (new feature on the iPod – Yippy) and listen again until I understand it.  I get my audiobooks from Audible and have done so for about 2 years now.

I’m trying to keep my brain working and this is the best way for me.

Let me know if you decide to try it.

P.S.  I’m even learning about Art History on Audible.  HA!