1. The quality or condition of being the same.
2. A lack of variety or change; monotony.”
Source: The Free Dictionary
I’ve always had a preference for expressing my uniqueness. I’m a Highly Sensitive Person. I’m a freelancer, currently specialized in combining coaching with social media. I’m a woman. I guess it’s only human to do so.
Today I noticed a lot of sameness.
I remembered I had written a guru-blog last week, and so did Jason Garner. I’ve read a post by Jason Ellison and it felt like he had put my thoughts into words. I spoke to two girlfriends and they’re going through the exact same personal experience as I am (sorry, not going into detail here).
Every marketing and sales trick is about emphasizing your uniqueness. Your Unique Selling Point (USP). It makes me feel special when I tell someone why I am different. It makes me feel even more special when someone tells me they’ve never met anyone like me before.
Of course it does.
But when I notice other people write about the same topic as I do, with similar intentions, and when I recognize myself in other people’s stories, I feel…hm. I guess the word is “home”. I feel connected to something that’s bigger than me, supporting me, recognizing my existence.
I know there are all these ideas about how human beings are supposed to live in groups, as social animals, and how we’re most comfortable when we’re living in the company of other humans. I’ve noticed we do the same thing when we go online: We look for people with the same background (such as the same high school via Facebook), the same visual interests (comfortably grouped in boards on Pinterest), the same taste in music (well combined into lists on Spotify) and the same fanaticism with words (such as the neat chaos on Medium, my latest obsession). That way, we feel connected to other human beings even though we’re not in each others physical presence.
Speaking of Medium, I did a search there for “sameness” and found the following interesting points of view.
Paul O’Brien notices:
“We learn and grow when we are introduced to ways of thinking and doing and being that challenge ours.
And yes, sometimes it’s tempting to run flailing in the opposite direction, because we’re keen for our own ideas to succeed.
But diversity is important. As Frederick Kerrest observes, ‘We want diversity; we want people to contradict us and to take our ideas somewhere new’. It is through challenges that our ideas, and thus our fledgling businesses, grow stronger and more robust.”
Whereas Devika Pathak states:
“We tend to get so entrapped in our own conceptions and ideas of reality, our perception of what is real and what certain things mean that it’s almost impossible to remove yourself from the situation and look at things for what they really are rather than the image you are projecting onto the situation.”
Finally Jonathan Carroll explains how “our sameness is our signature”:
“You listen to a Mozart concert because his musical vision and phrasing appeals to your sensibilities. Even if you are unfamiliar with the piece of music that is to be played, you know his compositions unfailingly work for you. An artist’s style is his way of seeing and then presenting that vision to the world. You either respond to it or you don’t.”
I believe we are all the same. The same in wanting to express our uniqueness. The same in wanting to be seen, heard, touched and loved. The same in that we are all unique.
What does sameness mean to you?
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