Choose the right zoom level for life

One thing that taking a break really helped me to see is how we can really look at what we’re doing on different zoom levels.
So imagine being very zoomed out, and you’re looking at the full picture.
And the biggest level, I would say, would be your whole life.
You’re looking at your entire picture of your entire life, what you want to do, and then maybe the major pieces of that, the major elements of your life, the projects that you consider most important, that our part of building or maintaining the life that you want to live.
So it ultimately comes out to the big picture of wow, OK, this is my lifespan, this is the time and energy that I have, this is what I can possibly do, over many years, and this is how I’m going to apply myself.
Completely big picture. […]
So you can imagine when you’re that far zoomed out, well it can be very helpful to get a new perspective, because you’re not being distracted by the little details that are in front of you right now.
You can take a step back and look.
You know, what do you want to do with your entire life? How do you want to change the world, even if it’s in some very small way? What do you want the world to be like? And then you, through your actions in your life, can do a small but real part in bending the world towards being the way that you think is good.
So that’s really the biggest picture. […]
It starts to move out of the realm of just big ideas about what life might be into wow, OK, actually, am I going to do this or not? You start to see perhaps actual deadlines lined up.
Depending on what it is, there could be fixed points throughout that year or two when certain things have to be done.
And it starts to get a lot more real.
Keep zooming in, down to maybe the level of a quarter, 3 months, and here, you know, 12 weeks: here this is like a real program, that OK, I have 12 weeks.
I want to get something done in this time.
And now you can start to see, like wow, OK, if I want to achieve this in 12 weeks, I better get working, and it’s really starting to get real.
And then you bring it down further, maybe to the level of a week or two, and here is when you’re actually planning out your week.
And this is OK, looking at all the responsibilities that you have, and the different fixed things you have to do, and then working around everything that’s possible so that you can do what you want to do.
Finally, you get down to the day, and you’re just looking at today.
What do I have to do today? Totally zoomed in.
But this is, of course, where the work actually gets done.
And it’s down to those little steps that connect with the weekly goal, that connect with the quarterly, connect with the year, the decade, the life plan.
All of it comes down to this little step that you’re doing today.
How does it connect and fit in with that bigger picture? And you can really zoom in even further, just down to the hour or the moment, and say OK, this little chunk of the day, this little piece that I’m doing right now: how can I do this right, in a way that helps the bigger picture? So at each level of zoom, you’re doing something that’s fitting in to the bigger picture.
You can think of it like a mosaic, where you’re working on one piece.
You want to get one piece right in the mosaic so that it builds this bigger picture.
Being at the right state of zoom seems to be an important thing to adjust.
Because I find it’s easy for me to be at the big level zoom, because, you know, I like the big ideas, and thinking about life and the universe.
And so when you take it down to “What am I gonna do right now towards it?” that becomes my bigger challenge.
Whereas for many people, they’re very happy working on little detail, can really get things done, but then when zooming out to the big picture, find maybe being overwhelmed or lost.
It seems like what you’re trading, the tradeoff, is that as you are at the zoomed in level, you can get more done.
It’s more practical, more functional.
As you zoom out to the bigger level, then you have more vision, you have more imagination of seeing the big picture, but you have less ability to get things done.
So somehow this balance of vision and execution.
We can control our zoom level on life and work to get the vision we need and the execution we need.
And for me, I really got zoomed in and was focused on just hammering out my daily/weekly tasks, and I needed that break to just zoom out, look at the big picture of what I want to achieve, and then I can make adjustments in my daily and weekly program, make the adjustments so that the little zoomed in work, those little details, fit with the big picture.
So I’d be curious to hear: how does it work for you? What kind of zoom level are you working with? Do you have some ideas for each of those levels of zoom, as to how you want to run your life?

#lifezoom #zoomoutonlife #zoominonlife

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