I remember my Art teacher telling me one day to take my glasses off to paint. I thought he was crazy because I am very short-sighted. Why would he be telling me to take my glasses off, as I wouldn’t be able to see?
But I did and there started my journey to zoom out.
This helps, as I’m a detailed person. I am a pretty focused person. I love to see detail, the lines, the grains on wood, the veins in flowers, and I also like things to land well – the messaging, the brand, the impact of a project.
What happens if being laser-focused on the end goal becomes intense?
You miss the messiness. The creative exploration. The new ideas that people have.
It is possible to do both.
When I started to take my glasses off to paint, I became much more aware of colours and shades, patterns I hadn’t seen before. And I learned to appreciate the experience and the movement of light and shade.
We can use this in everyday life by imagining taking glasses off and on, a pair of binoculars, or by slowing things down in your mind to see the intersections and opportunities.
A client was explaining to me how nervous he was looking for his dream role. He’d had a few secondments in his career where he had been focussing on project delivery, and couldn’t see how he could explain these.
He was in the mix of unknown and uncertainty, he felt out of control, scared, and frustrated that he had no idea what to do next or even if it could happen.
I encouraged him to slow down and zoom out of the detail, and in 30 minutes he left with a tool, a clearer head, and a renewed confidence and vigor to scope out what he wanted.
You are perhaps thinking, well that example doesn’t apply to me, or that sounds much simpler than it was. But I’d encourage you to give it a go.
My question for you this week is if you zoomed out and blurred your focus:
a) What do you see?
b) What have you missed?
c) Where are the intersections?
Give it a go and send me a note as to how you got on.
I’m currently planning my next small group mastermind called Un-Define. Send me a message or email if you’d like to be the first to hear about it.
Juliet is an award-winning executive coach, consultant, and leader. Over the next 10 years, her mission is to shape a million futures by liberating dreams, igniting possibilities, and elevating your extraordinary.
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