The Importance of a Wide-Angle View of Your Life
Great photographers have a range of camera lenses.
They zoom in to capture the raindrops on a newly bloomed rose. They use a wide-angle lens to capture the enormity of the Grand Canyon.
One lens is not better than the other. Sometimes we need details. Other times it’s the bigger picture.
So it is with life.
We must attend to the details but never lose sight of our bigger picture. What matters most? Who matters most? Why we do what we do?
Easier said than done.
Most of us have no problem with the zooming in part. We’re quite good at dealing with the small stuff because our days are one detail after another – meals, appointments, projects, children... We’re good at this.
The challenge is zooming the lens out to see the bigger picture of our whole life, how those small details fit together.
Big picture thinking is when we check in with our values. Do our daily details bolster what is most important to us? Or do the minutiae chip away at what we hold most dear?
If you’re not sure what’s important and worth keeping, add the phrase “in the long run” to your questions:
Will this make a difference in my career in the long run?
Will this make a difference in my child’s life in the long run?
Will this make me happier in the long run?
Skipping a work event to attend your child’s school concert will unlikely affect your career in the long run and will likely make a difference in your child’s life in the long run.
Rescheduling a lunch with a friend because an important client is in town will unlikely affect your friendship in the long and will likely make a difference in your career in the long run.
You get the idea.
Let me know how I can help.