See the Big Picture

Do you struggle with getting caught up in the weeds and details of life?  I certainly do. That’s not good for us. It turns out that “big picture people” are not only resilient but optimistic about life too!  What is the difference between a big picture person and a person who is great with the details? Well, for one thing, the detailed people make sure we have maps and bottled water and a first aid kit when we go camping.  So let’s celebrate the details! Big picture people also are helpful, if not quite as tangibly helpful in terms of gathering supplies.


A big picture person sees both good and bad events that occur in their life as temporary rather than permanent.  Nothing is FOREVER good or FOREVER bad. This is why they rarely use words like “disaster” to describe the normal upheavals of life.  They refrain from putting too much stock in the big wins of life because they understand that this too shall pass. BPP are less likely to live in the highs and lows of emotional reaction to current events.


BPP are also able to see events having a specific impact on certain areas of their life rather than having a pervasive impact on their entire life or their future.  When my mom passed away, I felt her devastating loss. But my grandson was born at the exact same time and this forced me to think big picture. One life was going and another was coming and although it was all an emotional roller coaster, it certainly provided perspective.  


As my mom was dying, I asked my husband, “Will I ever feel joy again?”  He didn’t answer but life responded with this little bundle of pure joy that reminded me that life was a grand both/and, not an either/or.  I understood that two extreme experiences could happen simultaneously and this reminded me that life was not ever defined by one event.


Finally, BPP do not play the blame game because they are more likely to be looking for meaning and purpose in events rather than people to prosecute.  This has the added benefit of allowing BPP to learn from events (accountability) without the emotional trauma of blaming (self or others).


Be a BPP!  How could you develop that skill in the days ahead?