We’ve all witnessed a version of this in action. The speciality restaurant vowing to serve free range, grass fed and organic. The gift shop committed to selling local and artisanal. The designer who refuses to work with fast food companies. Uncompromising—until they think about scaling or they hit a bump in the road of their business.
Staying committed to your intention, keeping the promises you made to the people you serve (and to yourself)—choosing to amplify your difference is at the heart of meaningful work.
What makes a compelling brand, an unforgettable book, or a piece of music that moves us is what the creator has chosen to leave out. The silence between two notes.
As the composer Gustavo Santaolalla said, “Not playing is sometimes more difficult.”
Knowing which notes to play is what makes all the difference.
Our job isn’t to play every possible note.
It’s to play one note every day that we’re proud to have played.
[And often to enable other people to do the same.]
Image by Timothy V.