Catching Fireflies… (and the flickering of an idea)



I’ve been with some friends this week, spending time writing and speaking to uncover our authentic ‘voice’ that we all have, but that some of us find easier to express than others.

One of the questions I’d had was about how to know which idea I want to capture in words, or in voice, or whatever form it chooses to take. It seems like I have a lot of ideas, and sometimes the wealth of them can be overwhelming.

...and Fireflies

Over lunch, the chatter turned to fireflies, a surprise sighting by one of our crowd a previous evening. We don’t have these sparks of light in insect form in the UK but I’ve seen them many times while travelling.

As my friend talked, I recalled an experience in Mozambique, in a remote lodge, in the years before WiFi and mobile phones, when there was nothing to do but sit and watch the fireflies flickering in and out of our awareness as we camped.

I remember being amazed by them. How is it possible a small creature can generate such beauty and inspire such awe. No single one of them less bright than another; some simply closer to the flame, easier to see, easier to catch if we had wanted.


My question came back to me: how to filter ideas, how to allow (or perhaps encourage) the ‘best’ ideas to rise to the top?

As I recalled the fireflies it struck me that the question was redundant; no one idea is brighter or less bright than another — some simply flicker closer to the net of my awareness, making them easier to catch, and capture in words, before they fly away, taking their light with them, back into the night.

With love,