“Everything is a remix, but what is your version of the remix?”
—CHASE JARVIS, From “Tools of Titans by Timothy Ferriss”
People in general are information processing machines. We consume excessive amounts of information on a day to day basis. The average person receives about 105.000 words, during the 12 period they are awake. This doesn’t include the information absorbed through interaction, nature, emotion, creativity, taste, news, audio-books, music, podcasts, live shows and social media. The list goes on and on. In total this adds up to an average of 34 gigabytes of information every single day!* Every waken moment, goes into processing data. It’s not a choice on our part, it’s in our DNA. It’s biology.
Growing up I was told that I was an original. An artistic child prodigy, destined for greatness. The next Picasso. Whatever I wanted to do, wherever I wanted to go; the world was my oyster. I was given the impression that the gold medal was pre-achieved. I just needed to decide what I wanted carved in the shiny blank golden surface. Nobody was like me and nobody would ever be as special and unique as I.
Looking back, this has me pondering that there is an error in that mindset. In fact, I am convinced that there is a mayor misconception about how we chose to define what is truly original and special. What this teaches young children is a screwed perception, that easily turns into a narcissistic view of the world. Truth be told these qualities are hard to shake when brought into adulthood. ‘The importance of me’ is not a good song to be singing to yourself.
I am a product of my experiences. All the information that goes into me, sub-or-continuously over time has developed me into ‘a remix’ of everything that makes me my own original self. This means that even my most original idea and treasured beliefs, usually are products of several pieces of information, that I have sown together like mental patchwork. The originality didn’t actually originate with me, but came as results of my environment, the books I read, people I associated with, and the lessons I learned along the way.
It is easy to conclude that I am a thinker. I am wise. After all, the thoughts that I voice may be something that is rarely spoken or heard. Consensus is that I must an original. Right?
To fall under the spell of thinking that I am solely my own and ‘self-made’ is easy. Even I have a tendency of forgetting, where an idea I’ve been pondering came from. Hence it becomes mine. A lot of times this is just not the truth. Most often the idea is ‘borrowed’.
What I find fascinating is how I recycle every piece of information I am given. The magic is connecting the dots. Turning everything into own my personal remix. This provides me with the chance to become a version of original the world has not yet encountered.
July 16th 2017
*Information consumption reference; http://www.tech21century.com/the-human-brain-is-loaded-daily-with-34-gb-of-information/