It’s easy to converge on things, we feel a need to become specialists, to get good at something, to feel like experts. And I agree, it is important. However, there’s an equally important process, that’s so easy to forget, and that is the process of divergence. When we explore new things, see something different, tread outside of what is familiar, something happens in our heads, new ideas can be born, new thinking emerge.
It might not always be easy to see the point of the divergence – the relevance of it might not be clear, and we don’t see how it relates to what our real job is. However I’d argue that it has all the impact in the world on our real job, because it gives us new ideas, perspectives and a way to solve problems better or even at all. I think my lack of blogging the past few months has been a clear sign of too little thinking outside of what my main focus has been – which is to lead and manage AIESEC in Sweden (not that I ever stop exploring completely – it’s one of my favorite hobbies!). When in such a mode of convergence it’s easy to properly make time for thinking outside, for seeing new perspectives or trying something completely different.
Overall, I think my ambition for my life is to live in varying periods of divergence and convergence. However, that requires that I make room for it in my lifestyle – and it’s a part that I’m still figuring out! Somebody who seems to have got it (I guess he had some more years to think about it than I) is Stefan Sagmeister, check it out: