Edge Action

Day 184 Week 27 Q3 Tuesday, July 4, 2023

In a siloed world, the action is at the edges. There is an increasing tendency to pursue specialization with more and more able to be known about less and less. Innovation, on the other hand, tends not to occur in silos but at the edges of disciplines where there is an intersection of infinities such as psychology and machine learning resulting in AI or audio and digital processing resulting in multiple audio processing revolutions.

The very act of trying to reconcile different worlds results in enormous creative leaps. Creative outliers do not tend to stay in their lane. As innovators necessarily come from the population of creative outliers, they too have this tendency sometimes so extremely not even to notice the lanes at all. I have been described as not knowing there was a box when engaged in out-of-the-box thinking and acting.

It is much more fun to wrangle multiple infinities simultaneously because there is so much to learn and discover effortlessly, crossing back and forth over the boundary between invention and discovery. We creative outliers like it that way. Not everyone does. I have heard creative people told to stay in their lane or “let’s not own that.”  Can you imagine being told not to take responsibility for something? And to keep your head down and pretend the rest of the world does not exist?

Yet this is the right of truly creative people because we do not notice these artificial intellectual boundaries.  Did you ever notice that creative people change their majors in college a lotta and also change careers when they get out a lot? How could we not? Reality does not care about these man-made boundaries. They are not like rivers, mountains and oceans, which physically do exist. They are constructs to help us understand what we are looking at by reducing distraction. But remember that all the action is at the edges because life is about relationships.

Relationships between people, nations, and of course, fields of study all yield interesting emotional engagement, as they say, for better or worse. Each person, nation and field is an infinite universe. The intersection of infinities has got to be an exciting place, and once you have grown to live there, it becomes increasingly comfortable.

The people who thrive at the edges, where all of the action is, are more comfortable with ambiguity, which permits them to change, evolve and adapt. Staying in your harbor can feel more comfortable, but that is not what ships are for.  We are like ships primed for journeys across the boundaries and edges to where the action is. 

Can this be turbulent? You bet! Is there a risk? Certainly. Do you constantly feel like everything around you can be improved? This does not mean you are a negative malcontent. You might simply be a creative change agent, for there is much improvement not only possible but very badly needed.

Innovators can solve all of the world’s problems by living at the edges and creating action.