Emotional Uncertainty in Exponential Times

I’m not sure how to share this experience because it is new, intense and raw, and writing is the way I try to sort things out.  So please bear with me.

How do we describe and define the intense feelings we experience when we see people we care about, colleagues in our profession, working their fingers to the bone at tasks that just don’t matter anymore?

Exponential change is our reality, yet many of our institutions continue to work hard to be exceptional at what mattered yesterday.

Picture yourself at work, and suddenly the discussion turns to whether term “flip phone” should have a hyphen or not.  If we argue this for even a single minute, we have missed 347222 Tweets, 2.4 million Google searches and 701389 Facebook logins.  Nobody cares about flip phones or flip-phones or how you spell it any more, yet  discussions this meaningless can consume our days.

We can be so busy at irrelevant tasks that we completely fail to take notice of how quickly the world has abandoned any interest in what we are doing.

As we strive to understand and embrace exponential change, recognizing this commitment to irrelevance in others creates an intense intersection of sadness, defeat, frustration, isolation and the irresistible desire to escape.

It’s coming to terms with the fact that a compelling case for change may not exist for these dedicated educators – the realization that the past is too entrenched, that beliefs are not going to shift, and, sadly, that you are no longer part of this tribe.

Or maybe that they still believe in certainty.

We have to know when it’s time to run, and begin again.  Maybe this emotional intersection is that sign.

Featured image by Stephen Downes CC-BY-NC-SA-2.0




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