There is a beautiful tension between generating ideas and being realistic. If we are realistic without pushing our creativity, we will get some things done, but certainly not great things. However, if we generate ideas without evaluating what is realistic, we may never achieve anything at all! So, we have this dance between dreaming big and understanding what can be done given current

How realistic are you?

constraints. To achieve our full potential, we need both! In fact, I like to look at being realistic as figuring out the right stages and timing for achieving a big dream. When I ran a marathon, I didn’t just wake up one day and run 26.2 miles. Instead, I was realistic about what my body could do (about a 10K at first, since I had already been running a good bit) and then slowly built up stamina over time. I had a big goal, AND I was realistic — and I succeeded! This also shows that circumstances change over time — so reevaluating whether something is realistic is a continual process, and plans may need to be adjusted accordingly.

This week’s Challenge: This week, I will notice what is realistic for me to accomplish given current circumstances.

Avoiding being Paranoid (Overuse): If you start to focus too much on the constraints and not the “big idea” to be implemented, then you start to imagine all the possible things that could go wrong (not just the most likely). At that point, you are headed down a rabbit hole of managing minute risks instead of putting energy towards implementation. The key is to filter the information you have to determine what really deserves your attention, and letting go of the potentialities that don’t.

Commendable Trait: Realistic
Underused: Unrealistic
Overused: Paranoid
Strength: Perspective
Quadrant: Wisdom