Imitation – The innovation inhibitor.

We often hear people say, “Wow, he is so cool. I wanna be like him”. I’m not ruling myself out of that group. I too have thoughts on the same line. However, what does that line actually mean? To what extent are you willing to “be like him”?

When you think about it, there is a certain inborn skill associated with each and every human being. The skill of innovation. By default, this skill is there because the human mind cannot be chained. However, a lot of forces are out there that are set on manipulating our thoughts so as to fit into the ‘plan’. The availability of entertainment and pleasure at our finger tips makes it really hard to get ourselves to think for ourselves. We think for the people that we see and involuntarily, we act so as to fit into the ‘plan’ too. The books “Brave new world” by Aldous Huxley and “1984” by George Orwell might be worth mentioning here.

Now there are people among us who, even though at the mercy of technology at his fingertips, do not retire into their comfort zones and succumb to the pleasure there. Some among us actually think about the things that needs to be done instead of the things that you should be doing anyway. I’m not saying that thinking about things that you should be doing anyway is a bad thing, but just that they do not bring about a change in the world.

However, the few among us who really do think might have been motivated and inspired by certain people. This is the context in which I would like to talk about the meaning of the line I said at the beginning of this post.

When we try to imitate a certain person whom we are motivated and inspired by, we are actually cheating ourselves into inhibiting our skill of innovation. Mind you, obeying and imitating are not the same thing. So do not confuse one with the other. Now coming back to the point, the person we are imitating brought about a change in the world because he thought of things that did not fit into the ‘plan’. He thought of a new way to do things and without fear, he made his thoughts into action and those actions, as much as it might have shocked people, showed them that things could be done differently, as well as thought of differently.

Thinking about it, it was not his actions as such what brought about the change, but rather, it was the way in which he thought. Hence when we imitate that person, we are actually forgetting and disregarding the actual message that that person gave the world. Instead of being inspired and motivated by how that person could even think about doing such a thing, we talk of that person as an inspiration and do the things that he has already done. In the current world where you live, what he did might not be even in the slightest sense, do good to you or anyone around you.

The point that I am trying to make is that you do not know what sort of a situation in the life of the person that you are trying to imitate made him do the things that he did. He had reacted to certain happenings that were going on during his time and in the world around him. What we should learn and understand is how he thought of what he did in such a circumstance. Unless we do that, simply doing the things that he did might not have any relevance to who you are, the time that you live in, and where you live.


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