In Praise of the Mundane

by | Feb 6, 2023 | Change |


It is easy to think change, innovation, and invention are exciting. Each is attempting to do things differently then before or than ever has been done before. And there is an aspect of it that is exciting. However, the excitement often comes at the start and at the end. The inbetween, where the hard work happens, is fraught with the mundane, disappointment, frustration, ‘failure’, and sometimes even pain.

I’m reminded of the Frederick Buechner quote about life:

Listen to your life. See it for the fathomless mystery it is. In the boredom and pain of it, no less than in the excitement and gladness: touch, taste, smell your way to the holy and hidden heart of it, because in the last analysis all moments are key moments, and life itself is grace.

Change is often a bit like this. It is both moments of exciting possibility and the mundane. We often focus on the exciting bits because that is what sells. And yet, excitement doesn’t happen without the mundane. Award shows require the mundane planning. Amazing home cooked meals with friends require the mundane chopping of vegetables and dish washing. Invention requires failure. So does innovation. And change often requires meetings and countless conversations (often repeat conversations).

Excitement doesn’t happen without the mundane. Perhaps it’s time to celebrate it.

Photo by Marek Studzinski


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