Don’t you hate that moment when you think you have a stroke of genius, but then realize your ideas have already been taken? In the modern world, it is more difficult than anything else to think of the new and the unexplored. And it is even harder to carry them out.
Hundreds of years ago, it was easy to make discoveries. There were endless ideas that have not been introduced to the world yet. As mankind discovers more and more things, it is becoming increasingly harder to make discoveries.
You always hear your teachers, friends, and parents say “Be original. Do something different. Be someone.” What we all don’t realize is how difficult it is to be original. Although there are an infinite amount of ideas waiting to be expressed, it is hard to think outside the norm when all around you is other people thinking similar thoughts. We are all the same.
We are taught to think alike. We all do the same assignments and the same worksheets in school. We need more projects where students can have the freedom to explore topics and create opinions of their own. These individuals are the ones who will change the world. Only the ones who go outside schoolwork on their own will attain success in the real world.
Instead of waiting for brand new originality to strike, try to be close to original. Take others’ ideas and expand on them. Improve them. Add your own personal interpretation of the idea. Take it further than ever reached before.
In this sense, being original is not coming up with an entirely new idea that has never touched the world. It is about adding more upon ideas that have meaning and purpose. When we invented the lightbulb, did this satisfy us? No. We improved it into a more efficient, more eco-friendly version. Were we satisfied with just the iPhone? No. We need five different generations of it until it became better and better.
Originality does not come without prior knowledge. It is backed up with lifetimes of research and development. Most of this research is borrowed from others’ work. And it is perfectly fine to use these ideas and expand on them to make them your own.
To further prove my point, I just browsed the web and found about five different articles with the exact same title as this post.