Clever Remarks

When people say
“I feel uncertain.”

The temptation
is to say something clever,
like
“There was never a time
that was certain.”

As true
as that may be,
that can shut down
a valuable opportunity
for innovation,
where we can support their reflection
on what negative outcome
feels certain.

Not Knowing vs Knowing Not

We often say
that the journey of innovation
is a journey of not knowing.

Sort of.

Innovation
often starts with a fragile feeling
that “there’s something here.”

It’s true.
We don’t know what that is
exactly.

But if someone asks us
“Is it this?”
We confidently answer
“No, that’s not it.”

Because, we do know
what it is not.

So yes,
the journey of innovation
may involve
numerous back-and-forths
between
“Maybe it’s this,”
and “Nope, that’s not it,”
until it becomes clear
what it was you were after
all along,
but could not express.

But no,
this does not mean
you know nothing
or that you’re crazy.

May we not let others
convince us otherwise.

p.s. Much thanks to Artist Yong Joo Kim & Dr. Paul Pangaro for inspiring this post

Certainty, not Uncertainty, Fuels Our Fear

We often say uncertainty
is scary.

Not exactly.

In situations of uncertainty,
there often co-exists
a feeling of certainty.

Except,
the certainty is of a negative future consequence.

Even if it’s not absolutely certain
something bad will happen.
It feels like it will.

What’s scary about uncertainty
is not uncertainty.

It’s the relationship
between feeling certain of a negative future consequence
and feeling uncertain of a positive future consequence.

Certainty is what fuels our fear.

To navigate uncertainty
we have to find a way
to decrease the certainty
of a negative future consequence.

In doing so,
we can start to let uncertainty excite our curiosity,
thereby turning it
into a motivator.