I recently recalled the cab driver who explained why he had not had an accident in over 30 years of driving busy city streets. He said that when he drives, that's all he does. He doesn't listen to the radio. He doesn't look at girls. He doesn't marvel at the scenery.
We are surrounded by distractions and yet are often so absorbed by what we plan to do in the future that we fail to appreciate - and attend to - the now.
And that, of course, is the trick: being able to shift from a glance down the block to the task immediately before you and then back again. Finding a zen-like peace in sharpening a pencil well, organizing the files, or focusing on a conversation while also having the capacity to think ahead.
Mother Teresa said she helped people one person at a time. Zig Ziglar said he started on his path to better health when he realized that he'd never eaten anything by accident. Each alluded to the power of the incremental.
Is there greater meaning and satisfaction to be found in the accumulation of well-done micros as opposed to the completion of a macro?