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Be a Channel, Not a ReservoirThis won’t be the first time I’ve written a philosophical piece here on the blog. In fact, I’m guessing that over 50% of what I’ve written has been philosophical.

Looking back, both my blogging and podcasting efforts have taken me in some unexpected directions. I didn’t expect to be doing consumer reports or to be talking about business mentality. Life is what happens to you when you’re busy making other plans.

Regardless, I wanted to talk a little bit about being a channel, and how that can benefit one’s life. In fact, I feel that it is a necessary part of an artist’s efforts.

A Reservoir

When I refer to a reservoir, I’m talking about accumulation. I’m sure you’ve experienced this before: there are times in life when new things seem to flow in at constant rate, and other times when nothing new flows in regardless of your efforts, hopes and desires.

I believe that this phenomenon is linked to the things that take up physical, emotional and mental space in our lives. New things usually won’t flow in when we’re already at capacity or overflowing with old things.

What we don’t always realize is that some of these old things have become unnecessary clutter, and they need to be cleared out from time to time.

Examples of clutter:

  • A pile of unopened mail
  • A closet full of unused clothing
  • Unfinished projects
  • Financial trouble
  • A broken relationship

A Channel

When I refer to a channel, I mean steady inflow and outflow in one’s life. It’s the process of finding out what you want and actively choosing it.

See, it’s easy to misinterpret the type of inflow you receive when you begin to un-dam the outflow. New things will start to come in, only you may find that you don’t really like the new things. This is where some people give up.

It’s perfectly okay if you don’t get what you want at first. You don’t have to hold on to the new things if you don’t like them. You can exchange them for other new things.

That’s the great thing about being a channel. By the time you get some of the things you’ve been desiring and longing for, you may find that you don’t have use for them anymore. Then you can immediately turn it into outflow, and watch as the new inflow happens.


I think that being a channel is really just about being generous. This concept isn’t generally taught in school, and if it is, it’s often misunderstood.

People often think that they will lose something if they were to be generous and give things away, when in fact it’s often the opposite. There will almost always be something to be gained from being generous.

This doesn’t mean that you should give to get, but rather give because of the abundance you have in your life.

“What abundance?”, you may say.

If you were to take a closer look at your life, I’m sure you could find areas where you live in abundance, whether material, financial, physical, or otherwise.

Moreover, processing that pile of mail I mentioned earlier is a form of generosity. Using your time to serve people at a soup kitchen is a form of generosity. Becoming free of your burdens is a form of generosity.

Getting It Out There

Oftentimes, an artist’s life is centered on projects. Whether you’re a painter, musician or poet, the object of the game is to complete that new masterpiece. Then another one. Then another.

A musician’s life revolves around a great many things that don’t always have much to do with creating things, but there is a creative cycle of sorts. Record, promote, tour, then do it all over again.

A problem arises when a project isn’t completed. It becomes mental clutter. For this clutter to turn into outflow, the project either has to be completed, or it has to be abandoned mercilessly.


It would be a little too simplistic to say that your outflow will always be proportionate to your inflow or vice versa. What I can say, and what I have experienced is that new things will come into my life when I’m willing to let go of old things.

Moving was a great opportunity for me to clear out some clutter. I sold things. I got rid of things. I gave away things. I’m still in that process.

I have seen many new blessings come into my life, and I’m eager to share those blessings with others.

David Andrew Wiebe
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