10 Comments

This is such a great real world example for brining this to life. This can manifest itself in the business world where teams get bogged down in the urgent tasks and forget to engage with the important tasks.

Zooming out again we see this in UK politics at present. A government unable to think beyond its own survival while it battles a 20% deficit in the polls. This is resulting in panicked short term decisions that are harming the country and the long term outlook for the Conservative Party itself.

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Nov 12, 2023Liked by Michael Woudenberg

Cliché I know, but thank you for your service.

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Nov 12, 2023Liked by Michael Woudenberg

Less a specific example of this concept, but more of a close cousin of this framework is the Eisenhower Matrix. Folks are often unable to prioritize important (but not urgent) tasks like the ones you describe, until they get "too close" and become urgent raging dumpster files.

Come to think of it, I do have lots of specific examples. Yikes.

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I've experienced this, usually while intentionally keeping my head down to avoid the encroaching problems that I don't want to deal with. And then I am somehow surprised when three dumpsters burst into flames around me. In one of Jocko Willink's books, I remember reading how he learned to put his rifle at high port in the midst of an intense training exercise in order to look at the tactical problem holistically. This allowed him to think 300 yds ahead instead of the 25 yds in your Walking Range analogy.

How I think that concept can work well in the daily grind is to set aside time with no distractions, and to be quiet enough to hear our own thoughts. Then identify the nagging thoughts that are trying to remind us of an important responsibility we've been ignoring, and make a plan to deal with it. Lastly, follow through on the plan.

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