Michael Ashcroft

February 23, 2021 23:44

When the void talks back

When you first start publishing your thoughts and ideas online — particularly the more vulnerable ones — it can feel a lot like screaming into the void. 

No one is listening to you. Even if people happen to chance upon you, they will see that no one else listens to you, and that encourages them to pass you by as well.

It’s a lonely experience and it’s the failure mode that causes so many to give up. In my case, I’m eternally grateful that, this time, I stuck with it and charted a safe course through those emotional doldrums. 

Because, after some amount of time, consistency, and — dare I say — courageous expressions of authenticity and vulnerability, the void comes to life a little bit. It starts saying things.

“I hear you.” 

“Thank you for saying that.”

Those quiet signs of life, the gentle flickers of light out there in the void, they give you the energy to carry on, to turn up the brightness of your own beacon within that void.

And it turns out that, the more you write and the more you share, the more the void calls back. You come to see that, instead of an endless, dark nothingness, there is a bright and glorious universe of light, heat and love. 

It’s a vast and rich fullness of other awarenesses just like your own, looking for the others, longing to be vulnerable themselves and to hear those words.

“I hear you."

"Thank you for saying that”. 

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I publish a regular newsletter called Thinking Out Loud, which covers things like stuff like building in public, Total Work, solarpunk, carbon removal, sense-making, building communities, creating positive narratives for the future, identity and various other things. 700 subscribers can't be wrong!

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