• Marian Willeke

Zooming In

When my partner says "Dax is zooming!", I immediately imagine my 8-month old sitting in front of a computer screaming baby talk at some hapless grandparent. It takes several seconds for me to realise that "zoom" can reference speed rather than the video conferencing tool.

There's another kind of zoom I recently remembered. How far in or how far out do you want to get? Carolyn Hax of the Washington Post explained this metaphorically for how we can maintain sanity in an oversaturated life - get very present by zooming completely into that activity, or see the big picture by zooming completely out to the universe.

And that zoom is the only differentiator for whether I'm begging Dax to sleep or whether I'm simply watching him drift off. Honestly, either way takes about the same amount of time. However, one way is panicking about all the tasks and the other way is zooming in on my baby.

Both Arlo and I get a lot out of zooming in rather than out, so that leaves us with a very significant problem. How are we going to get anything done? Drastic changes were needed. Each morning at brekkie, we decide what are three goals we want to achieve that day. Nothing more. That kills me. How can I survive only accomplishing three things in a day?

Here are some observations from days I skip the 3-goal step:

  • The day is filled with busy work that usually result in zero impact.

  • The day is mostly forgotten. I can't tell you anything that happened.

  • The day is full of lost opportunity. Or at least I presume because I've been so busy accomplishing nothing.

  • The day is spent with a mind body separation. I don't hear what my body needs so I miss meals, get dehydrated, and find conversations with loved ones blocking my progress.

Here are some observations from days I do the 3-goal step:

  • I get three high impact things done.

  • I love the reflecting on the day.

  • I discover experiences that I couldn't have planned for.

  • I feel healthy and connected to my loved ones.

So yeah.

I get far more done in a day with measurable and realistic planning and feel good about life. It may seem like a duh, but holy shit it's hard to do.

Oh! And one other thing we do is choose a joy we're wanting to experience. Examples for us include doing karaoke together, having a special dinner, going on a bike ride, or whatever just feels fun. I can't help but notice how few of those experiences happen without the intentionality too.

It's slightly terrifying to me how many years I have spent going full speed and most certainly accomplishing less than my potential, being less connected with my dear ones, and living off the highs of the huge joys.

And yet, it's still hard to do anything but those things.

One breath at a time. Zooming in.

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