I quite regularly don’t have clue. It’s good for me. It keeps me guessing.
When I was first diagnosed with diabetes, I didn’t have a clue what that meant. I remembered working with some folks who had diabetes when I was a staff at an Easter Seals’ camp. It was pretty scary. Young kids having seizures, having to check their sugars in the middle of the night, talk of blindness and limb amputations. Not having a clue about what diabetes meant was a blessing, because it forced me to be open to solutions and open to looking outside of the mainstream to find those solutions. I’m pretty sure I’d be shooting up insulin if I’d gone with the mainstream approach.
I also didn’t really have a clue as to what parenthood would be like. Which is pretty standard. It’s apparently something that you’re never REALLY ready for. Not having a clue in this realm has been great, my wife and I have been reading lots, observing other parents, and chatting with new and old parents alike about what to expect and what to watch out for, what’s normal and what’s not.
These two examples highlight two very important strategies for dealing with the fact that you often don’t have a clue.
- Research. And not just research within the assumed field, or topic. Critical research, the kind of research that is based in curiosity and openness, not assumptions and “finding facts” to support those assumptions.
- Collaboration within networks. That’s what they’re for. Somebody, somewhere, has thought the same thought, asked the same question, and sought the same answer. In all likelihood, they’ve written it down on the internet. Go look for it, and ask around.
It’s OK to not have a clue. In fact, I encourage it.
Remaining clueless? In a day and age when we have more information, that’s easier to access than ever before, and a network that stretches further across the globe than at any time in our history? Definitely not OK.