Lin-Manuel Miranda often says, “I have absolutely no chill.” Like his alter ego and artistic subject, Alexander Hamilton, Miranda seems possessed by enthusiasm, excitement, and a drive to “write like he’s running out of time.”
He’s not the only one, of course. Steve Jobs had no chill. Mozart, Bach, Picasso – no chill whatsoever. There’s a long list of leading creative minds who lived their lives in overdrive.
It’s a model for creativity, one that we admire; it’s also one that is undermined by our educational system, which seems to value chill above almost any other demeanor.
Quiet, respectful, dutiful, diligent, calm. These are some of the qualities of a model student. A model student with a surplus of chill.
Let’s either stop praising creators with no chill, or start figuring out a way to empower our students to use their lack of chill to create, rather than to earn punishments.