Stop, Look, and Listen: The Simplicity of Success


July 2017

Think back to the last time you took a multiple-choice exam. Have you ever stared at one of those small penciled-in bubbles for so long that, despite your initial confidence, your answer started to look wrong? So you’d change it only to find out, come final grading, your first answer was correct. Why do we do this? How can we see the answer literally right in front of us, but convince ourselves it couldn’t have been that easy?

Overthinking is an obstacle within obstacles. With the hustle and bustle of life, in a world filled with so much stuff, it’s often hard to notice the simple things—and sometimes the simple things are exactly what we need to see.

Take escape rooms for an example. We can get so caught up in the countdown that the ticking of the clock turns our attention away from clues left in plain sight. We second-guess ourselves and sometimes over-complicate things, justifying the notion that answers are solved through difficulty rather than basic intuition. The answers are so simple and obvious after the fact, that you’re left wondering how you could have missed them in the first place.

When we don’t put to practice the art of stopping to smell the roses, we can actually hinder our growth and success. So I challenge you this week to allow yourself to be aware and notice life’s simplicities. Try your best not to overthink or overlook. And if you’re faced with uncertainty, trust yourself and your power to observe.

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