When We Miss the Obvious

The other day, I spoke at length with my brother over the phone. It was nice. And he pointed out how I kept saying “obviously” and I do catch myself doing this sometimes. I think it’s because of my low confidence? I think what I have to say is obvious, so I point out that it is, to prevent others from catching me out?

Anyway, I wanted to talk today about things that are obvious. The things we miss because we overcomplicate things and stress ourselves out so much that we miss what’s right in front of us.

I wanted to encourage you to take a step back from any current problems or difficulties or creative blocks that you’re facing. Maybe there’s an obvious answer that you can’t see because you’re obsessing over it and are just too close to it right now.

Thinking yourself into a corner

Sometimes we think about something so much that we back ourselves into a corner. This is not where you want to be. In the corner, facing the dull walls, you can’t see things clearly. You’re in a place of desperation which could mean you make mistakes. Acting out of desperation is dangerous.

Turn around, zoom out, step away, and see more.

Not taking action

Instead of thinking, you might need to take action. Oftentimes, we think we need to meditate over an idea for a while before acting on it. Or we use the excuse of readiness and research or finances as a reason not to act. Sometimes you just need to do the thing and land on your feet after a period of freefall. We’re often never “ready”.

What does “ready” even look like?

Remember, there’s nothing wrong with failure and making mistakes as you go. Most people don’t even try at things.

Speak to others

We often can’t see beyond our own point of view. We think our own ideas are the only perspectives that exist. Incorrect. There are many ways to think about things; many ways to live your life or succeed at your goals. Speaking to other people (trusted people or experts) will help you to see from a viewpoint that maybe you couldn’t before.

Caution! Don’t get trapped seeking advice from too many people, only confusing yourself more.

Take a step back

Another obvious option is to just take a break, yet this often feels impossible! You are allowed to take a step back and just allow yourself not to think about or do anything towards something for a period of time. This time gives your mind (and perhaps your body) a rest that is needed to gain a new perspective on the issue at hand.

Hopefully, you’ll come back to it feeling refreshed with new ideas and ways to solve the problem.

What you really want

Why doesn’t it seem obvious to just do what we want to do? Why does that seem like it’s not allowed or that it’s the more complicated choice? It’s mad! Instead, even if it’s a slightly harder option, if it’s something you want and something that brings you joy then why not choose that obvious thing?!

Be brave enough to choose yourself

Choose to do nothing

And lastly, an obvious answer that people tend to miss is to just do nothing. Choose not to choose. Choose not to think about it right now. Choose to do nothing. This one may depend on the problem or circumstance (in fact, they all depend on various factors at play) but this could help some people.

For my wedding, I was becoming very stressed and anxious so I’ve chosen to do nothing for now. Chosen not to plan or force it and hopefully when the time is right, and my head is right, the right answers will come through.

Some obvious things we don’t do enough

  • Call someone when we are missing them
  • Get up and move when we feel low or sluggish or off
  • Write the story we want to write
  • Ask the questions we need answers to, even if we look silly
  • Try new things when we are in a slump
  • Do an activity if you’re always going from home to work and back again
  • Read or research or ask questions when you’re not sure or equipped for something
  • Fitness levels bad? Work out!
  • Hate your job? Get a new one
  • Want more responsibility/ roles at work? Seek them out
  • Not getting good grades? Carve out more time for study, reflection and practice
  • Always late and confused? Get organised with calendars, timers, planners, reminders, apps
  • Talk to people and get to know them
  • Relationship feeling off? Then talk about it!
  • Want to do something? Do it!

If it’s obvious, that doesn’t mean it’s not right or good. The obvious thing can be freeing. The obvious thing can be life-changing. The obvious thing is misunderstood, but it’s obvious for a reason!


S. xx

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