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IN LIFE, AS IN FLYING (2)

Scan, Baby, Scan. In instrument flying, a methodical scan of the essential flight instruments is considered critical to a successful flight in instrument meteorological conditions (“IMC”). This is so because fixating on any one instrument can cause the pilot to make decisions based on less than all available data, running the risk that the one source of data on which the pilot is primarily relying on is faulty. Without the input from all the critical flight instruments, the pilot may misinterpret what she is seeing, perhaps not even realizing when a given instrument has failed in flight. This of course can result in the pilot making the “wrong control inputs,” with potentially bad results and/or resulting confusion and disorientation.


In life, similarly, fixating on a single thing can cause disorientation and a loss of the critical “big picture.” How often do we obsess about ensuring one aspect of life is “just so” only to neglect another that is spiraling out of control. We train a laser-like focus on work while neglecting our health and relationships. Or we throw ourselves into a health and fitness program but forget to make time for friends and recreation. Or perhaps we get so caught up in “keeping up with the Joneses” that we miss all the joy that already fills our lives. Life coaches believe that the most satisfying life derives from giving attention to the full spectrum of life’s endeavors: relationships, career, family, health, play, and our physical environment. Keeping up a regular scan of all these facets enables us to quickly diagnose when things are out of balance so as to make a “corrective control input.” A life scan, like an instrument scan, is a skill that can be honed and perfected over time. And, like an instrument scan in flying, a life scan can stave off bad outcomes like failed relationships, illness, job burn-out, and depression.

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