The oyster metaphor

February 12, 2016
The Oyster Metaphor

There was a rock in my shoe. Not a big one indeed, some would even have called it a grain of sand. But still, it was there, and it wasn’t going anywhere, unlike me, who had to get somewhere.

This grain of sand, I carried it with me along the way. At the beginning, I wasn’t feeling it much, I really didn’t care. Why would I take the time to take off my shoe and remove it? That would be such a waste of time, not efficient at all. I had to keep going, I had to keep moving, if I wanted to get where I needed to go.

At some point though, the grain of sand started to bother me. Rubbing against my bare foot, it started hitching, then slowly the skin got more and more sensitive, and couldn’t stand anymore the presence of this intruder. Wasn’t it time to stop? Of course not. Instead of pausing to remove the unpleasant passenger, I decided to start running, to get even faster to where I had to go, hoping that running would occupy all my body, my mind wondering now about how much longer I could handle the pain in my muscles instead of focusing on the pain in my foot.

It did work for a while, but eventually, I had to stop: my foot was bleeding, and there was no way I could keep on running. At that point, it was hurt, and recovery was expected to be long. I was stopped against my will, when I wasn’t even there yet.


The Oyster Metaphor

How many of us are walking through life with a grain of sand in their shoe? How many of us have that something that is bothering them, but that we choose to ignore, as if it will simply vanish if we pretend that nothing is wrong?

I’ve chosen the great escape many times in the past. It is often the most seductive option, the easy one, as we get some relief right away. We feel uneasy, anxious, angry, sad, and then choose to ignore the signal that is sent to us that something’s wrong, prefer to keep going, as if our head knew better where we had to get to, as if our will power  was enough to get us there. We choose to take what we assume is a shortcut to relieve the pain we feel: we prefer to get a drink, crawled under TV series, do some spinning, hoping that by occupying our mind we will deliver our soul from the discomfort some disturbing event or experience brought.

By doing so, we are missing on some precious insight. If instead we would pause and acknowledge the pain, the uneasiness, the discomfort, we could address the real issue, and stop relying on some Band-aid solution.

And then, when the real issue is identified, we can get creative. That’s what innovators do. Elmar Mock, the inventor of the famous Swatch and founder of Creaholic, calls it the Oyster Metaphor. Just like the oyster which creates a pearl with an irritating grain of sand, we can use the disruptive experiences in our life to create a better world. All innovations are creative solutions to problems acknowledged by inventors who were willing to confront the real issues. They didn’t pretend the grain of sand wasn’t there. They saw it as an opportunity to propose something beautiful to the world.

Let’s create a better world: go out and create some pearls.



You Might Also Like


  • Reply akita inu October 1, 2016 at 0 h 54 min

    Hi friends, its impressive paragraph on the topic of tutoringand completely explained, keep it up all
    the time.

  • Reply Longchamp Handbags October 14, 2016 at 2 h 35 min

    Hello it’s me, I am also visiting this website on a regular basis, this site is actually
    good and the users are actually sharing good thoughts.

  • Reply November 2, 2016 at 7 h 03 min

    Hello to all, it’s really a pleasant for me to go to see
    this web site, it contains priceless Information.

  • Reply November 26, 2016 at 17 h 14 min

    The former direct exposure for overall hip substitute
    is particularly great for placement of the socket
    part yet it has substantial restrictions for implantation of
    the femoral stem part right into the femur.

  • Reply mecidiyeköy digiturk November 26, 2016 at 18 h 20 min

    Hiya very nice website!! Man .. Beautiful .. Superb ..
    I will bookmark your site and take the feeds also?
    I’m glad to search out a lot of useful information here in the post, we need develop extra techniques on this regard, thanks for sharing.
    . . . . .

  • Reply Custom RV Cabinets In So Cal January 22, 2017 at 10 h 27 min

    Definitely believe that which you said. Your favorite justification appeared to be on the web the simplest
    thing to be aware of. I say to you, I definitely get annoyed
    while people consider worries that they plainly do not know about.
    You managed to hit the nail upon the top and defined out the whole thing without
    having side-effects , people can take a signal. Will probably
    be back to get more. Thanks

  • Reply Anonymous February 9, 2017 at 18 h 42 min

    Your method off describing the whole thing in thus ppst is genuinely pleasant, all be able to without difficulty be aware
    of it, Thanks a lot.

  • Reply Malcolm March 24, 2017 at 23 h 11 min

    Include in that the fact that there is no gown code as well as you could play at any time you
    want from the convenience of your personal residence, as well as it ends up being clear that actual cash betting online is an exceptionally rewarding

  • Reply Queenie March 30, 2017 at 1 h 44 min

    je crois que tu ratais tes cours d’histoire René, vous n’avez rien aboli l’esclavage vous l’avait crée et quand il a commencé a se retourner contre vous vous l’avait abolit parceque vous vouliez tester la consommation .sinon pour vos lumiéres et civilisation les arabes vous ont précédé (aie.env,…c) compare l’andalousie a ton europe jadis !!ait un peu honte d’etre fiere de ce que tu n’as pas fait ! votre moyen age restera toujours votre ridicule !

  • Reply sdraietta March 30, 2017 at 13 h 48 min

    Fantastic blog you have here but I was curious about if you knew
    of any discussion boards that cover the same topics discussed here?
    I’d really like to be a part of community where I can get suggestions from
    other knowledgeable people that share the same interest.
    If you have any suggestions, please let me know.
    Bless you!

  • Reply eir tv broadband March 31, 2017 at 1 h 16 min

    I like the helpful info you provide in your articles. I’ll
    bookmark your weblog and check again here regularly. I’m quite sure I’ll learn many new stuff right here!
    Best of luck for the next!

  • Reply Arlette March 31, 2017 at 20 h 35 min

    This is my Kotton Grammer Endorsement to show to the world the kindness and compassion that he
    shares not just with OMG, but with the globe.

  • Reply Matt Esse October 19, 2017 at 22 h 57 min

    That stock photo isn’t an Oyster, it’s a Scallop.

    “The world is your Scallop” never really caught on….

  • Reply space matrix awards December 18, 2017 at 4 h 08 min

    You ought to be a part of a contest for one of the highest quality sites on the internet.
    I am going to highly recommend this site!

  • Leave a Reply