Light Bulbs

22 Jul 2018

“Imagine yourself sitting in a dimly lit room, reading a book with wires connected to your brain, and every time you understood a new concept or made connections between the book and your personal life, light bulbs literally lit up.”

So wrote one of my students after reading a particular textbook chapter in my interpersonal communication class.

I thought, what a great analogy that perfectly illustrates my topic!

How long has it been since you’ve had a light bulb go on in your head? How long has it been since you had a new thought, asked a question, or ventured into a novel experience?

I think we are always growing. That can mean many things:

  • Growing up
  • Growing mature
  • Growing fat
  • Growing old
  • Growing younger
  • Growing stale
  • Growing cobwebs

You get my drift.

So even if you’re not growing as a person, you are growing somewhere, even if it’s towards decay, rigidity and death.

I think a central law of the universe is that growing is good. That is, if it’s going towards better.

Every time you have an “ah-ha” moment, something in your mind and soul lights up. You discover something you didn’t know before, see something from a new angle, or generally get transformed.

Imagine sitting in a dimly lit room, when suddenly, your personhood lights up. Everything in you says YES!

Different analogies have been used to describe this experience throughout the ages. Jesus used the term “born again” to describe a transition from what was to what can be. Though the term has been bastardized in recent years, the concept behind it is very real; it’s about opening one’s mind and heart to new things. Its about getting unstuck and embracing growth. It’s like being born again!

Some people think this only happens once. But unless you are being born again and again and again, you are likely growing stale, boring and irrelevant. Every new day it’s possible to start anew.

Change is a inevitable and universal; you get to determine which direction it goes.

Anything that attempts to hold still atrophies, dies and gets left behind, whether it’s a star or a plant or a person.

No matter what your personality and comfort level with change and uncertainty, you have to admit it’s part of life. How you handle it will make all the difference.

Think about what you can do to put yourself in a place to get turned on. Read a new book. Watch a documentary you wouldn’t ordinarily. Hang out with someone unlike than you. Experience something new and distinctive.

Give yourself the opportunity for a light bulb moment, then let your light shine. Not only will it make a difference in your life, but it will profoundly better the folks around you.

This little light of mine, I’m gonna let it shine…

Photo by Patrick Tomasso on Unsplash



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