While we were sitting in the theatre I was thinking about why I like to see some movies on the big screen. We all know that through the magic of On Demand, and Netflix, we can see just about anything we want from the comfort of our own armchair in our own home. However, the movie theatre still calls to me for certain movies. I realized that this is because while I am in a movie theatre, I am fully present with whatever is happening on the big screen. At home I can fix a snack, wash dishes text, and check email, all while I watch. I can even pause a movie and come back to it when it is convenient. I began to think of the connection between the ‘Big Screen’ and the ‘Big Picture’. At the movies, they are the same thing. When I am watching the Big Picture, I am making a choice to be present; to trade some of my time for the purpose of watching a movie. When I do this, I tend to follow the plot more carefully, care more about the content and retain what I see.
And of course that got me thinking about life. So often in life we get caught up in the little picture. While we do that we are distracted by a myriad of little things. These things keep us so busy that we really can’t even see our way to doing things differently. We are so busy ‘doing’ that we can’t take a step back to think about what we really want to be focused on.
Just as the big screen focuses me on the ‘big picture’ in the movie theatre, taking time to step away from the details of my life helps me focus on the ‘big picture’ of my life. I know, from experience, that the times I when have really identified what the big picture is for me, have resulted in the most rewarding times of my life; not always the easiest times, or the most popular times, but the most rewarding times.
One example of this was when we were raising our children. I worked full time from when Kaitlyn was just under four months old. That is just how it was then. When she was in lower elementary school, (about grade 5 or 6) and Greg was two years behind her, I was offered a chance to take a job in administration. This would have given us more money, it would have given me more ‘status’, and it was flattering to have been sought out for the position. My big picture at that time was very, very clear to me. When I stood back and looked at my life as a whole, I realized that in the big picture, I had very few years to ‘be there’ for my children. This was the North Star upon which my life was guided. Saying no was not that hard. This decision aligned perfectly with my values.
Having said that, another person in the same situation may have made the exact opposite decision and assuming that their big picture was to do all they could to provide the best for their family, they may have felt very peaceful taking the promotion. Neither choice is right. Neither choice is wrong. The key is to understand our own personal ‘Big Picture’ and to keep it in clear focus.
This coming year, 2017, I plan to keep my ‘Big Picture’ in very clear focus. I may even ‘buy’ a new lens for my inner camera to make sure that I don’t miss any details. I want to look back on this year as one where I made deliberate choices to do things that matter to me now, and that will have mattered when I look back on my life. I challenge you to do the same.
With that in mind, as promised, I have created and am offering a new workshop next month. The workshop is called. “2017: Passport to Loving Your Life”. I invite you to join me for the day of Saturday, February 11th, from 9:00am -3:00pm. It is a day of putting lives in focus. See below for details.
As a thank you for being a faithful reader of my blog, I am offering you special pricing for the workshop. This special promotional code is valid until January 28.