“The human race is just a chemical scum on a moderate-sized planet, orbiting around a very average star in the outer suburb of one among a hundred billion galaxies. We are so insignificant that I can’t believe the whole universe exists for our benefit. That would be like saying that you would disappear if I closed my eyes.” - Stephen Hawking
Whenever I’m stressed out I take a few deep breaths and look up to the sky.
I think about what the astronauts experience when returning home from space.
It’s called the Overview Effect.
Overview Effect: the change that occurs when astronauts see the world from above, as a place where borders are invisible, where racial, religious and economic strife are nowhere to be seen.
The blue and green Earth appears alive, and yet no people. The atmosphere reveals itself to be what it is: an impossibly thin onion skin that protects us from the killing void of space and yet appears penetrable, destructible.
I calm down and the stress disappears. I realize how insignificant I am in the entire schema of life.
I’m basically here for a blink of an eye.
Nothing I do or don’t do will have any real lasting effect on the planet.
In three generations I won’t even be remembered.
I love this perspective as it frees up so much energy to just enjoy the pure miracle of life.
The mystery. The chaos. The beauty. Everything.
How often do you stress out over something that feels important, but won’t have any lasting effect?
If you’re encountering wins in your land business great.
If you’re encountering frustrations you can learn and benefit from great.
I love the Zen story of the Zen master, Banzan walking in the market.
“When Banzan was walking through a market he overheard a conversation between a butcher and his customer.
“Give me the best piece of meat you have,” said the customer.
“Everything in my shop is the best,” replied the butcher. “You cannot find here any piece of meat that is not the best.”
At these words Banzan became enlightened.
All the moments are the best moments.
It helps to get out of our heads and look at the world from the point of view of an astronaut…
And be so grateful for our short time on this spinning rock.
“It suddenly struck me that that tiny pea, pretty and blue, was the Earth. I put up my thumb and shut one eye, and my thumb blotted out the planet Earth. I didn’t feel like a giant. I felt very, very small.” – Neil Armstrong, Apollo 11