Back to the Crowd
"In order to lead the orchestra you must first turn your back to the crowd."
I don’t know who to credit this brilliant quote with because there are many different variations all attributed to many different great minds… Aristole, Max Lucado, some guy on Twitter with thousands of followers. But despite the variation in original source, or the variation in sentence structure, the essence of the quote remains the same. In order to lead, you must first know who is deserving of your attention. You must have a selective sense of apathy. It’s imperative. You must be wary of criticism from those content in just being a spectator. Apathetic to those who want to tear you down simply because they see you rising above them and don’t have the drive or energy to push themselves to do more. In order to lead you must tune in on what matters most, those whom you are leading. Only then will you produce the greatest performance that you’re capable of delivering. Conductors have the power to soften music, increase tempo, elevate the concentration of particular segments within a piece; the slightest shift can be the difference between ungodly noise and harmonious melodies. But how can a conductor guide his or her orchestra to the sound of greatness if they’re too busy listening to a bitter teen muffling “This sucks,” underneath his breath?
We live in a world that tells certain populations they were born to follow. Women. Minorities. The poor. Youth. The list of voices often silenced goes on and on and on and on. And when individuals from these various groups emerge as leaders or to the forefront of a movement, they are strategically sensationalized. Not to take anything from those individuals because they are indeed sensational, but they are glorified and made to seem abnormal so that others from their respective group will see their success as unattainable and inapplicable to their own lives. They’re seen as anomalies and untouchable. Maybe even flukes. They’re placed on pedestals so high that the common person who belongs to the same marginalized group as the almighty superhuman can relate to them in appearance or nationality or beliefs but not in potential influence or ambition or perseverance.
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