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Wednesday, July 11, 2018

Brain Mining

When I'm working on a big idea, I feel like I'm mining my brain. I'm digging down deep to make the knowledge, connection, and process solid, unforgettable, and easy to retrieve. I'm cautious though to keep the connections and not let the mine be too narrow as I know there needs to be more than one shaft in that brain to make ideas deep yet fluid. I wonder what those who know the brain well think of this analogy, and I wonder how much this has to do with my brain versus other brains.

Many that I connect with chastise my repetition, and that chastisement leads me to many questions.

First, I wonder how they work deeply to develop their practice? Can they do that without the deep analysis, repetition, and mining I need to do? Are there other ways>

Next, I wonder if they are satisfied with a superficial level of betterment and if depth is not a consideration they make.

Further, I wonder if my need for depth is an uncomfortable and troubling challenge for them.

A couple of my most challenging and impassioned students this year, not unlike me, were married to deep mining related to drawing, movie making, and creativity, and probably like my naysayers, I too sometimes tried to get them to move up from their creativity mines to the work at hand. I had expectations to meet and I wasn't allowed to let them work on their passions all day. I did try to incorporate their passions into our work, and honestly if I was their teacher for more than one year, I would probably have learned to do that better as I developed stronger relationships with these students.

But getting back to my central point, I find that we have to mine the brain to deepen what we do and how we do it. We have to make solid, but fluid, brain paths to develop our efforts in ways that matter, and these paths require time, dedication, repetition, practice, analysis, reflection, revision, research, study, and more.

Do you mine your brain to do better work in more meaningful ways? How does that feel? Is there a better way? I'm curious.