07 Apr We all belong to generation C
I used to fight for freedom. That was and still is my self-motivation.
When I was a kid and did something wrong my parents forced me to stay in my room. The only escape was my Walkman (a Neolithic music device that read songs written on a tape). I wasn’t an easy kid so that happened a lot.
When you are in prison and love freedom like me the only thing you have in your mind is Prison Break (the tv series played years later maybe because they studied me).
And that was when I discovered that in my room apart from my Walkman, I also had a pen and a lot of paper (yes, back in the days we didn’t type we wrote…erm… ok from now on find all your answers about the stone age here). I thought that although I couldn’t escape physically I would build worlds to liberate my mind until the time I could be free again.
My first novels were born in my 15s. I created worlds where kids rode Harley’s and wore speedy shoes, flying jackets that allowed them to fly with birds and change places really fast. And of course they didn’t have parents (usually they were killed in an accident, I wasn’t creative), they could do whatever they wanted to.
Years later, in University, I realised that the physical world wasn’t so loveable and likable like my fictional worlds. And that made me spend more and more time in the fiction world than in the so-called real one.
How real is our world today? (Oh and the coronavirus is like my parents when I was 14, it won’t ever let me go… aaaaaarghhhhh). We will get to this later on, though.
When I was 24 I got a job in a multinational company where they told me I had to wear a suit and tie and turn up every day, 9–5. Long time before that I’d learned that this was called a rat race.
I used to work till 11 pm and even my luxury Jeep in the company’s parking wasn’t able to ease my pain. I couldn’t understand how the world is like that and why we need to be here when we can work from home, or from anywhere we want. And then I read a lot about the industrial economy and the school and how the world works ( here for more).
Allow me a minute of a brief history lesson I’ve learned:
[Begin]: Before the industrial economy we were farmers. There weren’t jobs in the way they exist today (at least up to 7 weeks ago). We owned just one pair of shoes and one jacket. Not because we were poor but because there wasn’t any reason to have more. And then machines were invented. One shoe-maker can produce 8 pairs of shoes per day while a machine, — handled by people who don’t need to have any knowledge of shoes but know just how to use a machine — thousands. And then we built factories around the machines (like we built Camelot around the round table, a joke from another era). Industrials rose and the need for more workers was one thing. Changing the people’s culture from having only one pair of shoes to a whole closet was the second. And who is better at creating workers and changing cultures? The School.
Now you know what we learn in school. We learn how to become another cog in an assembly line of the industry we choose to work in and we also learn how to become the best consumers ever. [The End]
Then the digital world arrived and new opportunities appeared in front of me. I could write a blog (remember my stories), share my ideas (I had new stories), communicate with a lot of people and find others like me (the world is full of weird people). What was the most important thing; that you can say ‘hello’ to millions in a second simultaneously and they can reply to you in many different hellos (including f**k you) in the same second. Can you imagine? (of course you can, you are living it). This means that at the speed of light I could speak with likeminded people and together we could build a better world. A better world for me was a free world.
I realised that it was the first time that if I want to talk I can create a podcast. If I want to broadcast myself I can go to YouTube. And if I want to write I can build a blog. And here is the good part. No one could stop me.
I did the experiment. I wrote a book, self-published it, and using my marketing tricks it became a bestseller (there are definitely better writers than me just not such good marketers).
And yes, my business is on my backpack (that I never give up and actually sleep with). I have a device called laptop and an Internet connection and I can work from anywhere in the world.
Life has been unexpectedly interrupted. I can do my work for sure but overnight someone switched off my life and grounded me in my room. (I’m scared that I will actually turn around and see my old Walkman and my parents young again. The most frightening thought is to have class tomorrow, ‘chills’.)
We thought we were following an evolution path. We sent a man to the moon; built sky towers in the middle of the desert with artificial islands. We can transfer healthy human organs and stop someone’s death bringing them back to life. We have fought so many wars only to understand that we are stupid to hate each other because we are different and we’ve learned that this differentiation matters more than equality and fitting in.
But overnight we realised there is something that reminds us that life, as we know it, is not a given, it can be stopped just like that (like Thanos clicking fingers — Was it, Thanos, by the way behind this?).
And here we are now. Holding our breath, grounded, not in a room, but in our home. Volunteering, somehow. And I was thinking, what is the difference between those days that our parents obliged us to stay in our rooms? The Digital World!
Today I feel lucky because I can write again sitting on the floor in front of my bed. But the difference is that I have my kids around me playing with their devices (or painting on the walls, oh sh*t!), I have a nice view from my window and I’m not only writing my stories but conversing with millions of you sharing words, songs, positive messages, and business ideas on how we can build our freedom stronger this time.
I used to say that in the digital world our physical capabilities are just an option. I wrote this a long time ago when I sold my first story to someone living thousands of miles away. I wrote this the day that I gave a speech through Skype and made people take action and build their own businesses, follow a purpose and make this world a better place. And I still believe it now as I write this letter that I will send to my peers and upload it to social media hoping for it to go viral and touch as many as it can.
Today we don’t come from different generations but we all belong to generation C. Some people will say that C comes from Covid-19 but I don’t believe it. I believe that C comes from Connection because we all need to be connected and we have to stay connected. I believe that comes from Care because it’s time to stop advertising mediocre things to unwilling people and build better things showing real care to people who love them. And it comes from Creativity, because if you were looking for the day to start asking “what if?” and “how to…?”, this day is here and it’s today.
I have always ended my speeches with, “Go and do something remarkable. People are waiting for you to lead them.” Now, I will say “Connect and build remarkable and valuable relations. Create and stay relevant. People still wait for you to lead them through your brands and your stories.”
P.S.1 My email, WhatsApp, Messenger, websites and all social media accounts are open to anyone who wants to connect, share ideas and want a consultation on the digital life.
P.S.2 Don’t send me another video\photo of your cats and dogs, food recipes, makeup and workouts, we have enough already. In fact, we had enough even before this situation. I’m sure you can do better than this.