Big Picture vs. Here and Now

Do you tend to react to situations based on your immediate emotion in that moment? Or do you take a step back, and not let it affect you until you look at it from a couple different angles?

My race yesterday got me thinking about that. When I passed that finish line, I felt unstoppable, undefeated, impermeable, and awesome. I felt this way for a good hour! Yep, it only lasted an hour. That’s because after an hour, the next situation I was in, was able to change my emotions that quick. And it was over something very silly – that definitely doesn’t even matter now.

As you can probably presume, I am a here-and-now react-er. I tend to feel absolutely glorious when paid an awesome compliment, or accomplishing something wonderful, only to feel the deflation of those feelings if I run into a not-so-good situation moments later. And in the end? A lot of those negative situations don’t mount up to much anyway.

It reminds me that I need to step back, and take a look at situations from a big picture perspective. I should think, sure, I feel apprehensive now, but tomorrow at this time will I about the same situation? Thinking about this reminded me of a great book I read a while ago called, 10,10,10 by Suzy Welch.

(Doesn’t she look like Danielle from the Real Housewives of New Jersey? Please tell me I’m not the only one who watches this awesome brain-cell-killing show! :D)

It’s based on the premise that we need to look at situations in life with this perspective: how will it affect me in 10 minutes? how will it affect me in 10 months? and how will it affect me in 10 years? Basically, it makes you look at the immediate, the near-future, and the far-future consequences.

A situation that a lot of us, I’m sure, can relate to is missing a workout. So you miss a run and now you feel very apprehensive about it — in the here and now. But what about next week? Will it still matter then? Probably not because you’ve probably made up for the run anyway. So why worry about it in the immediate present?

Then there’s the other side of that coin – giving up running altogether. Will it matter now? Of course – your training schedule will change. Will it matter in 10 months? Yep. Will it matter in 10 years? Who knows.

What type of perspective do you have? One like Suzy’s where you can look at a situation from the big picture? Or do you let situations affect you immediately, regardless if it will matter in the near or far future?


5 Responses

  1. I am definitely a reactor like you. I tend to wear my emotions on my sleeve. I am hoping with age and maturity I will get better at this.

  2. I know I am a reactor like you. Your comments really, really make me want to read that book. No matter what my age, I know I could reflect, get over things and improve my reactions "next time."
    By the way, great race yesterday ( I did not have time to comment:) If you ever get really tired or sore in a 10K, take a walk! That time won't matter a few hours after the race.

  3. i heard about this book and love the 10-10-10 principle! i used to be a reactor (and still am to some extent) but i always ask myself "will I even remember being upset about this 20 years from now?" … if the answer is no then I just move on. thanks for mentioning this book!

  4. I'm a 10 minutes reactor! I know looking at the bigger picture is something I need to look more towards though. That book looks good!

  5. I am a reactor. Thanks for mentioning that book.

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