“Nothing great was ever achieved through conformity. To thine own uniqueness be true!” – Futurist Jim Carroll
Groupthink. Committees. Consensus. Buy-in. Harmony. Concurrence. Unanimity. These are the words, ideas, and cultures that kill great ideas.
YOU are the owner of your great ideas. Don’t let others beat you down, wear you out, tire your initiative, challenge your belief – because you know, deep down in your heart, that you are on the right path. And even if you aren’t, at least the failure will be yours to own – and yours to learn from.
I’ve never liked the word ‘conformity.’ To me, it reeks of the failure of sameness, an admission of defeat. You are giving up on your ideas and beliefs in order to achieve the approval of others. Why? What’s the point?
You should celebrate your uniqueness, and use it as fuel for your creativity. The fact is, when everyone is running one way, run the other way! Because when everyone is thinking the same thing, you’ll always end up with the same thing!
Nature abhors complacency, despises routine, destroys hubris, punishes consistency, reorders routines, inhibits uniformity, and abandons mediocrity. Don’t be like everyone else. Be yourself!
Being unique, though, means that people might laugh at you, and ridicule your ideas. Ignore it – because it usually means that you are right!
Here’s something I wrote in the foreword for a book over 20 years ago:
There are a lot of lonely visionaries out there.
They’re working in their own specialties, their own areas of concentration, their own technology systems that they will believe will shape the world. And often, they are ignored. Battered and bruised. Advised they are on the wrong track. Told in no uncertain terms that they are, well, not quite with it.
Be a lonely visionary. Because in your heart, you believe in what you are doing.