My Struggle with Details

One of the things that annoys my family and friends is that I’m vague when it comes to details. If they ask me questions about granular details, I usually don’t have an answer. If they ask a high-level question, I likely can answer. For example, what was the keynote speaker’s main point? I can answer. What personal examples did the keynote speaker use to support the main point? I may not remember (unless I took notes).

Over time I’ve realized that I’m not wired to remember granular details or live in granularity. It takes lots of energy and sometimes frustrates me to try to remember and process granularity. Having lots of conversations about granular things can also feel challenging. I have done these things in the past, can do them now, and will likely do them in the future. But it’s not my preference. To be clear, there’s nothing wrong with granularity. Many people enjoy it. It’s just not a good fit personally.

In the past, I’ve compensated for this shortcoming by taking detailed notes. More recently, I’ve learned to embrace my wiring and focus my energy on really understanding the big picture. My notes are less detailed, and I don’t view my tendencies as a negative anymore. I’ve realized that I naturally seek to understand the big picture, to understand high-level concepts. The big picture and high-level concepts are where wisdom usually resides. As a curious person who enjoys learning, that wisdom is exciting; it’s what I seek. As I’ve shared with my friends, I enjoy seeing the forest, not each individual tree.