In London, every trinket shop, boutique shelf, and tube station will have something stating the now trendy slogan: Keep Calm and Carry On.
The slogan, with a bright red background and white text, was originally created as wartime propaganda during WWII to try and boost the morale of British citizens, in the event of an invasion. Over 2 million posters were printed and since they weren’t widely distributed, it didn’t really leave a lasting impression. In my mind, perhaps Winston Churchill’s wartime exhortations were enough to keep people fighting to victory.
However in the year 2000, a copy of the original poster was discovered in a used bookshop in Northumberland. Since artistic copyright on pieces such as this only last 50 years, it was released to the public domain. And now, it is advertising mayhem. It’s on t-shirts, mugs, mouse pads and more… With a new twist, you’ll find: Keep Calm and Eat a Cupcake; Keep Calm and Go Shopping; Now Panic and Freak Out … and so on.
I have a sticker with the original slogan, Keep Calm and Carry On, that I purchased on the Southbank of London, right before I returned home. I keep it in my office on my bulletin board as a reminder of a country I love and an experience that will always be dear to me.
Today I decided that it will remind me of something else. Not to keep calm in the midst of a stressful situation, though that is good.
But it will serve as a reminder that one idea can lead to another. That even though an initial idea doesn’t happen right away, that doesn’t make it a bad one, or one that won’t someday have life. It will remind me to keep stoking the creative fire because you never know which idea will catch — and spread like wildfire on the hearts of humanity. A fire that will hopefully spark something in each it touches.
One idea, even if it fails, will always lead to another. It’s the very act of creating and imagining what could be… that is what I will never let go of.
If you think about it, God is the MOST creative of all and we are created in His image, then He designed us to create – to come up with ideas, solve problems, find solutions. It’s inherent in us and we need to tap into that.
Friends, keep jotting your ideas down. Keep trying them. Testing them. Because you never know what could be found in a second hand bookshop someday … waiting to be let loose.
Aaaand, my personal fav. Because, why not? 😉