(How) Can I be different?
Following our passion, making a stand for something, or bringing a difference means that we have to be different.
I was saddened this week, when Jack Monroe (@bootstrapcook) gave up Twitter. Despite a massive and supportive following, continual abuse and trolling led her to leave the platform to ensure her mental health.
It's a common story.
Whether we aim to make small personal changes or promote change on a grand scale, we always face pressure to fit in, make a compromise and collude with the circumstances that we seek to shift.
As I look out across a world approaching environmental collapse, increasing social fragmentation and deep injustice, I wonder what would be the most intelligent thing that I could do. And in that headspace, I calculate, bargain, do deals and take the easy option.
Meanwhile, my heart is quietly making wishes: "Please, will everyone.... just wake up to what is happening...please..."
Even more gently, I feel sick in my stomach. There I can locate despair, confusion and sorrow for the state of the planet and our troubled social structures.
We can train ourselves to be to be smart, cocky, intellectual; there is safety and strength in that. We can learn to tolerate conflict, on social media or elsewhere.
But connecting to our fragile, intuitive, gut feel helps us to define a resilient vision for who we choose to be and brings resourcefulness to how we offer our difference to the world.
Take a look at "Big Magic: creative living beyond fear" by Elizabeth Gilbert.
Or "Hope in the Dark" by Rebecca Solnit.
Thanks to Amanda at Originate.co.uk for a catalytic conversation.
Photo from the Bold Explorations.
Find Jack Monroe at Cookingonabootstrap.com