Sunday, 6 May 2012

The View from Outside

Sometimes what you really need to get a problem in your head sorted is a bit of space. Some distance from the problem. Metaphorically or literally?

I’ve always found that standing back and examining an issue objectively has really helped me. Talking over an issue with a good friend has often enabled me to get the degree of objectivity that I need. To be able to put myself in someone else’s shoes and look back at my issue.

But literal distance I also believe really helps.

A week or so ago, I took a coach journey a couple of hours away to a different city. I had quite a few issues whirring round in my head at the time that I didn’t seem to be getting anywhere with. So, using a coaching technique I suggest to others, rather than letting it dominate my thoughts during that week, I planned to set aside the time on the coach journey to mull it over and have some “worrying” time then – and got on with life.

The day dawned, a relaxed start. I had a (worked related) book to read, some music and a movie on my (new)iPhone – and that knotty problem to worry over.

But I didn’t even think about it. I just listened to some music and watched the world go by. Changing scenery. A different cityscape. Oh yes, and I dozed some (hopefully not dribbling and snoring!).

I met a friend, did some shopping, had a lovely lunch.

Leaving the time to go back to unwind that problem.

But miraculously it had gone! It seemed totally clear and obvious what I needed to do.

And I hadn’t spent any time worrying about it!

What is it that a different view, a place away from the normal, a challenge to our normal routine does to our brain? It felt like my re-set button had been pressed and all was back to normal.

Good excuse for some more trips away I think!

What about you? Does this work for you? Are there times you can remember this happening?

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