Taking the Long View
It's so easy to get caught up in the present moment. So many of us are constantly thinking about what we can do next or what is happening right now that needs our attention. It's hard to step back and look at the bigger picture sometimes, but it can be necessary if you want to be successful in your career/business/life. Taking the long view on yourself, your career, or your company will help you make better decisions for your future!
The long view is essential because it can help you to think of creative ways to solve problems. The long view also helps you take risks, which are often necessary for success. The long view can also help you enjoy the journey more and find meaning in setbacks or failures that may occur along the way. Taking a longer view helps people be less distracted by short-term events that might not impact them at all.
An essential part of taking the long view is looking ahead. This means visualizing where you want to go with your life and how it could play out - not just day-to-day tasks like work assignments but also significant life events like retirement or family. While it can be challenging to plan for the future, taking time now and then to sit down and imagine your life in a few years or decades is an essential part of long-term thinking!
It would help if you also looked back on yourself from time to time. Look at how far you've come - whether that's over weeks, months, or even many years. You might not notice significant changes day by day, but if you take a step back and think about all the things you've learned (and what skills you have/don't have), it becomes clear where your strengths are and how much better off you're able to do things than when starting. This self-reflection process makes sure that we don't get too caught up in the present moment.
If we think about our goals over more extended periods, we can make better decisions. We can focus on our priorities and take the necessary risks if we want to be successful in life or at work. Taking a long view gives us perspective when things might seem like they're not working out for us - it could all turn around later down the road!
It's important to think about yourself from different angles since no one is always looking ahead or constantly reflecting. It's good to have a balance between thinking forward into your future versus focusing on where you've been today/earlier this week/month etc., as well as taking both shorter-term tasks (like whatever you need to finish up now) seriously while also considering what will happen further the line if you don't do something about it.
There are so many benefits to taking the long view, and you don't have to do anything super drastic for it to be helpful! Try thinking a little longer term than usually when making decisions, take some time now and then to visualize your life a few years down the road, or reflect on where you were when starting. These small changes will go a long way toward helping you feel more confident that what you're doing is going somewhere positive. It may seem like planning too far ahead can lead people astray, but this isn't true at all - if we want success in our lives/careers/companies, etc., we need to look beyond today's problems!
A good way of taking the long view is planning for short-term events. For example, if you're in a meeting and need to take notes on a specific topic, instead of writing down exactly what's being said (which could change or get forgotten), write down keywords that will help you remember important information from the discussion. That way, when it comes time to do something with your notes - whether at work/home/school etc., they can be helpful!
Another good idea is taking up new hobbies. Learning how to knit might not seem relevant right now, but once winter rolls around and it gets cold out, you'll have skills that are entirely applicable in real life! It doesn't always have to be very obvious either: learning more about marketing strategy may never be helpful in your day-to-day life, but it can help you think strategically about how to get ahead at work.
If we take the long view and consider all that could happen over some time - weeks/months/years, etc., then we have more confidence in our decisions and more control over what's happening around us! We don't get stuck worrying or wondering if something is working out for us because whenever there are problems (which will come up no matter who we are), they'll be easier to overcome since we've taken everything into account. Having a plan B doesn't hurt either, so keep an open mind while looking toward the future and remember: having perspective means never getting too far from the present!
Taking the long view allows you to understand your aspirations better. It also allows you to chart a path to those aspirations. The long view will enable you to stay on your path day today. It is what will enable you to keep marching on even in case of a setback. How many times have you reflected on something in your life that seemed devastating but in a few years felt like a great learning event?
An excellent book to read about why the long view is essential is The Infinite Game by Simon Sinek. Here's a video about it too, but seriously buy the book or borrow it from your local library. It's required reading for our Solvers at Solvative.
The long view is the best way to succeed. The more time you spend thinking about your needs, desires, and pain points upfront, the less work it will be for you later on. While this may seem like an unappealing prospect at first glance, many people find that once they start taking a long-term approach to their life, careers, and business, things become much more accessible than ever before.