OK, probably an unfair analogy, but yesterday I thought I was about to see a tragic accident.
You see, I was waiting to cross the road at a busy intersection.
While standing there, the pedestrian crossing light flashed and made the sound for the other street, signalling it was safe to cross.
However, standing next to me was a young man deeply engrossed in his smart phone.
Without looking up, he proceeded to start crossing the road – but it was actually still “don’t walk” on my side and he was about to walk in front of a bus.
Maybe that was his plan – I hope it wasn’t because I called out to him and he was able to step back in time.
Now I am not the hero, because about five other people standing with me also did the same and called out to him.
As to our new friend, he sheepishly stepped back onto the foot path and proceeded to look at his smart phone – and no, it wasn’t Angry Birds or Candy Crush!
The lesson of course is that are we so engrossed in the day to day that we miss what is happening around us… the big picture.
In this case with our friend, the big picture was the disaster about to happen.
Over the years in my time working with various businesses and startups, I have seen similar things like that happen.
A typical one is cash flow, or should I say cash drought.
In these circumstances the entrepreneur is so passionate about their idea, product or service that will disrupt or transform the market, that they forget about their finances.
The disaster waiting to happen of course is that they will run out of funds and never get to launch – potentially giving up in disappointment and becoming one of those dreaded business statistics on failure.
The other side to the big picture are the opportunities that are being missed.
All too often we do not see what is actually around us or in many cases in front of us and it is only when we stop and really open our eyes that we see.
After all, do you think it is possible for example, to make money when the share market is on a downward direction, or the property market has slumped?
Well of course it is possible, it just might not always be obvious.
So let me ask you a question…
What is the “big picture” in your life right now?
Can you “see the forest for the trees” as the saying goes, or can you only see the twigs on the ground?
Are you so caught up in the doing that you are unaware of what is happening around you – busy making a living but are forgetting to live? Or as that great line from the movie Shawshank Redemption…
Get busy living or get busy dying
Recently I had an opportunity to meet with a young couple, both entrepreneurs with some great ideas.
I suggested that they go away for a weekend together.
Because by doing this, by reflecting on where you are and then contrasting this to where you want to be starts to give you not only the clarity of what to do, but the important why you are doing it.
I will get back in touch with them shortly to see how they are doing.
But what about you?
What do you need to do today to be able to see the big picture?