Belonging matters as much in the metaverse as it does in physical space. It is my belief that the more connected one is to his/her core, the better one can care for their personal ecosystem. Here are a few perspectives that I hope enrich your sense of purpose and and belonging.
Self — to Self
We live in an era where extroversion and narcisim are rewarded. If you are an influencer there are so many ways to game the system and so much pressure to keep the momentum flowing. My fear has always about having an authentic journey so very public. I started on Twitter in 2009 and early on got the oxytocin of feeling how a single voice could have global impact. Luckily I came across some writing by Eric Hoffer whose sapience deeply moved me. I went from intoxicated to terrified in the amount of time it took me to read a seventeen word sentence. As with all power, the rub . . . responsibility.
It would be difficult to exaggerate the degree to which we are influenced by those we influence~Eric Hoffer
I continue to chew on this as I practice and coach the need to honor that we have a private self and public self and need to ensure that as we build platforms we continue to interrogate how we contribute to that platform and ensure that we don’t identify as The Platform. There may be a time where you go beyond what you have built and the maintanance and curation of the entity may actualy slow your growth or limit your true purpose. Keep two lanes always : what I am working on / what calls me. Sometimes they intersect. Sometimes they do not.
Self possession is a very different thing that self absorption. The self help industy is estimated to grow to $13.2 billion by 2022 with 5.6% average yearly gains. What I am talking about is taking care of that part of you that doesn’t need a $99 a month yoga studio, that doesn’t need another TED Talk, and doesn’t need to measure their sleep to feel rested. I encourage you to find ways to write in a journal, carve out time to walk in nature, and simply unplug. We are born with incredible intuition. We simply need to find the stillness so the insights can speak in whatever language resonnates. For some of you it will be seeing a sunset so beautiful you literally gasp. For some of you it will be a journal entry that your hands cannot right down quick enough as you get a download from the noosphere. For some of you it may be a drawing that nobody understand but some internal puzzles causing sleeplessness are immediately resolved. Claim yourself as worthy to spend time with.
Self — to Others
I share this image because it shows to me the truth about intimacy. We all know aspects of one another but who a person is and what keeps that person up at night is a space that we cannot really touch — never really know. I even wonder if we can know that space within ourselves. We are all so very connected and yet we are learning more and more the depths of our lonliness. We need to strengthen our empathy and care for one another. I first shared this article in 2013 “The Lethality of Loneliness” and it is still one of the best ones out there. Solving loneliness requires a dynamic between an individaul telling the truth about what they need and another to realize that the people in your life are not telling you the truth about what they need. That was probably not a gramatically correct sentence. In our culture we are bred to be individuals: strong, self determined individuals. The times in my life when I needed the most help were the times I was too ashamed to ask for it. Being vulnerable and having people save face for one another are attributes that we need to add to core competency models as much as we need to understand “what the heck is an NFT?” It is easier to learn new technology than to learn about outselves. It is easier to learn how to code that to decode why the people you love the most are afraid to tell you the truth about how they are really doing. I don’t have links and answers here. I simply want to raise the conversation. My own vulnerabilty is showing now as I don’t dare leave this section without at least two book recommendations.
Self — to Technology
I got interested in technology in 2011. A simple question my four year old son asked me causally as he was snug in his car seat and I was driving to daycare catapulted me into the world of digital ethics a space I am now emersed.
“Mommy, does your heart remote control people?”
Right there, right then like I got hit by lightening : the profound awareness that my son would never know the difference between reallity and virtual reality. He would know only one reality that would have more dimensions that I could even have the capacity to process. We are at such a fragile moment in history with AI, cloning. metaverse and that which I do not yet know what it is called. Regardless of the limitations or progress of current and future technologies, what I know for sure is that our attention can only be at one place at a time. Every thought, every intention is energy. Your energy matters; your intentions matter. As we move toward living in the metaverse, we need to keep continue to talk about and express dignity. Objects can be injured; intentions can be felt. Thoughts are harmful no matter the medium.
“Yes, Griffin. Your heart has the capacity to turn people on and off. How you think about the other is the switch.”
In the rigor,
* This was first published in Medium on 2/14/22