In the book, The Art of Possibility: Transforming Professional and Personal Life, Rosamund Stone Zander and Benjamin Zander show us the 12 things we can do to go on a journey of possibility, rather than living a life full of hurdles and constraints of our own making.
These are some of my favorite concepts and takeaways from reading the book.
The Second Practice: Stepping into A Universe of Possibility
In this chapter, Roz and Ben discuss the definition of a “measurement world” and how our senses of survival and competition shape our view of scarcity. They offer the following observations and recommendations for us to think about:
We grow up in a world of measurement. We survive our days mainly by measuring, comparing, and competing. In this world, most things are scarcity-based, and competition is the vehicle to success.
In the world of measurement, the pie has a limited size. So if we take a slice, there is less to go around for others.
In the realm of possibility, abundance is the default mindset. We like to take actions that are generative or giving by nature. While many physical goods may have a limited supply, so many non-physical attributes of our lives are boundless.
In the universe of possibility, the pie is enormous. If we take a slice, the pie regenerates and becomes whole again for others to tap into.
Roz and Ben invited us to ask ourselves this question:
“How are my thoughts and actions, in this moment, reflections of the measurement world?”
Look for thoughts and actions that reflect survival and scarcity, comparison and competition, attachment and anxiety.
Keep asking the question, and, before long, we would realize that we have to work with so many assumptions shaped by the measurement world. For example, our measurement world is very much driven by the attitude of scarcity-thinking.
“In the measurement world, you set a goal and strive for it. In the universe of possibility, you set the context and let life unfold.”