I was on my way to Chicago the other morning. On my casual walk to my gate, blasting Lenny Kravitz in the ear buds, I saw something that made me smile:
…a kid running up and down the concourse jumping up and down, trying to touch various signage.
He was laughing and having a ball.
I used to do that too, and being a taller kid, I often achieved my touches. ‘Twas victory.
But at some point, I stopped doing it. We all do. At some point I suppose it becomes weird for adults to run down airport concourses.
Even me this morning, as Lenny was cranking his cover of American Woman, I so wanted to stop, slip on the air guitar, and jam and sing.
At what point does society and culture beat this out of us?
Is is school? Is it our parents? Is it other maturing kids that make fun of you? Our own sense of growing shame?
I wish we could stop this, and turn it around.
I wish we didn’t judge people for having fun and being goofy. I wish we didn’t look at people strange for singing out loud to their iPod.
There’s obviously a time and place for professional and respectful behavior. But, as a collective people, I wish we could let loose more. Feel less shame. Not give a damn what other people think.
This is important. Why?
Well, I think it would make people happier and less stressed, for one thing.
But in a business setting, I think it would make people more human, which would make them better salesman.
And I think it would unleash dramatic new surges of creativity and innovation. And Lord knows, every organization needs more of that.
We are creative, shameless, and wickedly curious as kids. I’m not the first to talk about the idea that we lose those as we get older.
So let’s do one thing today: Make one shift in your mindset:
Stop judging adults who jump up and thwack airport concourse signage (or do other whacky, fun things). They aren’t doing anything that impacts you personally.
If we all do that, the world will be a happier and more creative place.
P.S. And if you see me touch the sign, run up and high five me!
CLICK HERE TO JOIN THE LIST to live a more intrepid life.
Drawing by Hugh.