Take The Time To Think

At the moment I’m feeling a bit frustrated, overwhelmed, disappointed – the song lyrics that come to mind (I often frame things in terms of song lyrics or movie scenes & quotes) are from Tonio K’s “American Love Affair”:

…she should know better
But no one’s let her
Take the time to think at all
Much less think twice…

Seeing the keystones and the linchpins is always a key to being successful, and more importantly, the keys to being effective and efficient. Again speaking in metaphors and analogies, given that the original job was to drain the swamp, now that we’re up to our asses in alligators, what can we do to not just get out of the mess we’re in, but to also succeed in the original goal and move on. We could flail away at the “alligators” and flounder around in the “swamp” and slog through the mess as best we can, but is there a way to solve the problems in an innovative way, saving massive amounts of time and effort?

Can we even see what the problems are to begin with? Do we have the opportunity to step back and take a breath and look at a bigger picture, or do we not have time to think at all, much less think twice?

As always, I know from experience that the best course is often a combination of strategies and efforts. Start by just plowing ahead, slogging as best you can, and never giving up, but also keeping your eyes open, maintaining situational awareness, and being ready to jump on any opportunities or take reasonable risks when another course of action (the innovation mentioned above) becomes available.

There’s a common diagram that probably has a lot of truth to it:

The only change I would make would be in the relative size of the two circles, but that may be part of why it can be hard for me to make the leap. I think that the “comfort zone” is the much, much bigger circle – that’s where the slogging and plowing ahead happens, where there’s no time to think at all.

On the other hand, that comment in itself may be part of the issue – perhaps the “magic” zone truly is the much larger one and that’s the reason that it’s so desirable to leap into it.

On the third hand, my inner cynic notes there’s an awful lot of space outside of the comfort zone that is not where the magic happens – what happens there? I suspect it may not be “magical,” which is why it’s better in the comfort zone.

These are things I think about, and one of the reasons that I’m neither a life coach or a priest.

I’ll let you know if I find any answers. Or clues.

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Filed under Job Hunt, Paul

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