Yesterday, I was listening to a song and it was titled “MCE (Man Crush Everyday).” It made me think back to “LOL Smiley Face” by Trey Songz, Soulja, and Gucci. I realized that these songs would only be relevant in the time period in which they were written. Artists have two options: either create art for the rest of time, make art that can be appreciated for all eternity, or fade into history. Now, since no one will be alive forever and most people don’t create works that can be appreciated across centuries, most artists will fade into obscurity soon after their careers end.
The same is true with any work you do. If you’re a financial advisor who can only advise in times of a strong economy, your influence will wane during a weak one. If you’re a résumé developer who can only work on corporate résumés, what happens when an aspiring creative director looks to you for help? As young professionals, we need to time-proof ourselves so that we don’t lose the juice, as many of our predecessors have. That means finding staples that can adapt. The résumé should sell you for the period in which you present it. Are you growing with the times or letting the times drag you along?
Make your work timeless. If you write, write something that will always matter. If you paint, paint with eyes that can be appreciated across generations. If you perform, perform content in such a way that even language cannot prevent people from loving what you do.
You have it in you to make something that is timeless. It’s just going to be a lot harder than writing “LOL, Smiley Face.”
Make timelessness a priority.