It’s important not to get these the wrong way around.
Covering many things probably means we won’t get a lot done … well. Bringing a breadth of people to work on something specific provides impact.
‘More breadth … doesn’t cause change … . Focus works. A sharp edge cuts through the clutter.’*
‘The massively transformative purpose (MTP) galvanises passion, attracting the best talent and inspiring them to give it their all.’**
Peter Diamandis and Steven Kotler describe the power of an MTP for focusing and providing breadth in the best ways: twenty five teams compete for the prize offered for the design of spaceships at one hundredth of the cost of the original vehicles sent into space.
We don’t have to get into competitions for designing a new generation of spacecraft to experience the power of the right kinds of focus and breadth. Who wouldn’t want to harness the power passion, talent, and giving all?
Behind this there are people identifying their personal foci, being able to add this to a breadth of people working together to bring about change, not because they feel they have to but because they want to.
‘In the sphere of material things giving means being rich. Not she who has much, but she who gives much. … She gives of herself, of the most precious she has, she gives of her life. This does not necessarily mean that she sacrifices her life for the other – but that she gives her that which is alive in her: she gives her of her knowledge, of her humour, of her sadness – of all expressions and manifestations of that which is alive in her. … Love is the active concern for the life and the growth of that which we love.’^
“What stands in the way becomes the way.”^^
What we choose to love comes from within, not without. Personal responsibility isn’t something forced upon us but is what we come to believe we must do – this in response to the needs we see in the world around us and others may not. If we really live in a world of abundance rather than one of scarcity, something quite astonishing happens when we understand we have what we need to create a compelling story to live in.
‘Every creative endeavour becomes a realisation of both how limited and unlimited we are.’*^
I know I’m limited – but others complete what I lack. This is the importance of breadth.
I do know how unlimited you are – because you haven’t come to the end of exploring your passion, talent and giving of your all.
(*From Seth Godin’s blog Holding Your Breadth.)
(**From Peter Diamandis and Steven Kotler’s Bold.)
(^From Erich Fromm’s The Art of Loving. I have changed the gender from him to her; I don’t think Fromm would mind – he was writing in the 1950s.)
(^^Marcus Aurelius, quoted in Ryan Holliday’s The Obstacle is the Way.)
(*^From Erwin McManus’ The Artisan Soul.)