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Have you ever noticed that each of us seems to need permission to do things? Permission to add a tweak we once thought silly. Permission to enjoy music we once hated. Permission to accept that cables matter. Permission to ignore or accept what our emotions are telling us. In short, we work hard at giving ourselves permission to do all sorts of things. It's one of the reasons we read reviews, magazines, go to audio shows. New information provides new possibilities to give ourselves permission to do what we once stayed away from, or were afraid to experience. Simple case in point. I used to hate opera. The closest I ever got was Elmer Fudd singing "Kill da' wabbit!" I had given myself permission to reject the screeching and silly singing - to make fun of it and those who enjoyed it. Eggheads without appreciation of real music, like jazz or rock. But then I matured a bit - watched other people closing their eyes and swooning to music I simply did not understand. FOMO (Fear Of Missing Out) took over and I gave myself permission to see if there was anything I could enjoy. Now I cannot get enough of it, though Wagner still vexes me. Our minds are like muscles. They need exercise, change, and challenges to grow. And, at my ripe old age of 67, growth is less important than maintenance. I have to keep challenging myself just to keep my mind from getting smaller! Our tendencies are to conserve, to maintain and protect the permission sets we've granted ourselves already. After all, they work and we've dodged enough bullets to get where we are. Except when they don't. I want to keep changing my permission sets and opening new vistas.
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Paul McGowan

Founder & CEO

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