Thoughts on Aspiration


It's a funny word, really, not one we use a lot. We talked casually about aspiring to something, having aspiration, but "aspiration" isn't one of those words people use a whole lot. It’s just a funny, useful words that we take out occasionally, like a special tool we use only under certain circumstances.

I've been thinking about this word lately, as I do; language fascinates me. Thinking about it, I realized that what a lot of people actually lack in their careers is aspiration. Maybe one of the reasons we don't use this useful word is because we don't experience what it means very much in our lives.

Aspiration. Aspiring to something. Directing ourselves towards something and hoping to get there. It's really a lovely word.

But too often we don't really aspire to more. We play defense. We hope things just won't be as bad as they are today. We hope for mediocre because the president is kind of lousy. But aspiration? We don't have much time for that.

You need time for aspiration in your career, and indeed your entire life. If you don't aspire to more, direct yourself towards more, you will at best achieve mediocrity. At worst you'll only be able to say that your life isn't as bad as it could've been.

Playing defense is not the same as aspiring. Keep that in mind. We just get so busy playing defense for so long we forget aspiration.

We geeks? We're great at aspiration. We're used to dreaming of the future, having seen it crafted in film, television, video games. Were used to seeing it appear in technology that we code, and work on, and see in the news. Were used to seeing things take shape before our eyes, crafted as cosplay, fanfic, websites, and more.

We can see things better, faster, cooler, more interesting. We have the tools we need to aspire, by looking at what can be.

So stop playing defense! Start aspiring. Start making things happen.

You're geeks. You've probably been doing this all along, and just haven't realized how much aspiration you're capable of.

It's a funny word. It’s also an important one.  Maybe this special tool ought to get used a bit more.

Steven Savage