A small town chamber of commerce invited a speaker to address its annual dinner. The community’s economy was bad, people were discouraged, and they wanted this motivational speaker to give them a boost.
During her presentation, the speaker took a large piece of white paper and made a small black dot at the center with a marking pen. Then she held the paper up before the group and asked them what they saw.
One person quickly replied, “I see a black dot.”
“Okay, what else do you see?”
Others joined in agreement: “A black dot.”
“Don’t you see anything besides the dot?” – she asked.
A resounding “No” came from the audience.
“What about the sheet of paper?” – asked the speaker. “I am sure you have all seen it”, she said, “But you have chosen to overlook it.”
“In life, we also tend to overlook and take for granted many wonderful things that we have or happen around us and focus our attention and energy on small, dot-like failures and disappointments. The so called ‘problems’ that we have are usually like the black dot on the paper. They are small and insignificant if we can widen our horizon and look at the whole picture.”