When’s the perfect time to share?



This post was originally posted on my new blog — ffs.fm. I’ll be moving all future posting to there and closing this website down/changing it up. If you’re subscribed (RSS or email) to this blog, please subscribe to ffs.fm instead. Sorry. This should be the last “pivot” for a while.

I’m trying to figure out when’s the perfect time to share that you’re going through something. Is there a perfect time?

I read a lot of blog posts/tweets/instagram posts. I watch even more YouTube videos. People are constantly going through shit (it do be like that sometimes).

And, like, I definitely know that “as shit hits the fan” is not a great time to share personal struggles. But it is a great time to share “communal” struggles.

The start is usually the most tumultuous period of any personal struggle. Sharing any lessons you’re learning as you’re learning them seems (feels?) pointless. If hindsight is 20/20 then whatever the opposite of hindsight is is… terrible vision.

With communal/social problems — the earlier you share, the better. So, like, protests, revolutions, wars, etc. etc. It’s definitely important to be upfront that shit’s going down. The solution will require collective action, and the sooner you can get a bunch of people working together to solve a problem the more likely you are to solve it (eventually). Hesitation doesn’t benefit anyone but the oppressor (or whoever/whatever is causing the problem).

But then on the other hand, sharing anything after it’s all over and you’ve had time to process isn’t great either. There’s survivor bias for any “lessons learned”. There’s the mind’s natural response to suppress/forget/cloud memories of traumatic events.

There’s also a bit of a mix of wishful thinking and exaggeration. You sprinkle in ideas about how things could have been done better without actually knowing if it would make things better.

And then there’s always a chance that you learned the wrong lessons. You try twenty different things and then you don’t know what worked — you just know that something worked.

Moments of crisis are notorious for making applications of the full-cycle of the “scientific method” nearly impossible.

And, so, like, by process of elimination, the best time to share any ideas/lessons is when you’re “in the thick of it”. That’s when you’ve got solid footing and you know which way to go to get the ball rolling. But, also, like, that’s also exactly the moment where 100% of your attention is supposed to be focused on doing the thing, not talking about doing the thing with other people.

So… that’s just something I’ve been thinking about for the last couple of years. LMK if you actually have an answer for this one. The comments are open.