Many years ago, I used to work in an office that overlooked a parking garage. It wasn’t much of a view, but I found myself rarely looking out of the window, anyway. I was able to become very focused at work and intent on the task at hand, and block out my surroundings. I moved on from that company and went to another company whose office was on the water. I had a corner office with two walls of picture windows overlooking Tampa Bay and could see all of nature, including beautiful sunsets, dolphins, pelicans, stingrays, and more. It was a gorgeous setting and view. And yet I often found myself once again not paying attention to my surroundings at all. My husband would call me at work and ask if it was raining in my part of town, and I would often have no idea. I’d have to stop and look out the window and say, “Oh, yes, it’s raining, and there’s even a beautiful rainbow that I had not noticed.”
What a shame that I was so focused on what I was doing, that I lost sight of the big picture and my beautiful surroundings. How many sunsets and rainbows did I miss? As I’ve gotten older, I’ve learned the importance of paying more attention to what’s going on around me. I need to be focused at work, and I also need healthy breaks in the action so the world doesn’t pass me by. I need to occasionally look up, check out my surroundings, and pay attention to what’s going on around me.
What about you – are you so focused on certain things that you are missing much of what goes on around you? Take a step back and look at your surroundings with new eyes and share your observations with others. Appreciate what you have and what you do. Take time to appreciate those sunsets and rainbows in life. It will help you become a better leader.