Change or Die

Some dill in the potI’ve been on a spectacular journey of the mind and career lately. I’m a writer and media girl trained in old media in a dizzying new media world speeding forward like a bullet train. Some days the mass of new things I’m learning makes my brain explode. I want to take a couple of digital natives, and it would only take a couple, and syphon some of the agility and speed and knowledge and ease of navigating the technological leaps right out of their head, click control/C, and shove it into my brain.

When I walked into a theater to see the Academy Award winning movie The Artist, I had no idea what to expect. It’s about a dapper fellow who was at the top of his game as a star in silent films in the day when talkies had yet to be invented. Technology changed and with it the nature of work and his success in his art. He tries a new thing and fails, then despairs. Finally, he tries yet another approach in his changing genre alongside someone who believes in him and helps him leave his comfort zone, adapt to the changes and do a new thing with his innate gifts.

When I walked out of the theater I pitched my popcorn bag and said to my friends, “Here are three words about the meaning of that movie. Change or die.”

It’s easier, far easier, infinitely easier, to keep doing what's comfortable, but I don’t want to be one of “those” kind of people who pine for the golden past while skidding my feet to stay in the present. I don’t want to be stuck in a silent film, lamenting the obsolete.

Change or die.

Which is no choice at all, just a realization.

I’m pushing myself to learn and adapt and here’s the thing. I am totally fascinated. My career is changing and my mind is growing, which of course is the best part.

I pine only occasionally now, like when the number of new things I’m trying to learn at once edges me toward brain explosion, so I take an adaptation break and stick with the known for a while, but not too long. I find I love taking my hard-earned experience, body of knowledge and skills, my passion and ways of doing things, and mashing it in with the new. What a fascinating time to live. What a spectacular journey.