Are you so busy looking for what you think you need that you can’t see what’s right in front of you?

Are you sure you will recognise success when you find it? (or it finds you?) How fixed is your idea of success? Or are you open to the idea that it might not look anything like you expect, so you might want to consider how you will recognise it when it comes along….

I have just come back from recycling a load of bottles someone left in my flat. To save overflowing our recycling bins at home, I made a detour to the local Tesco’s recycling point. I was rather disappointed to see that it had been closed up, with solid metal shutters across the sections that must be for various glass collections. There seemed to be only a couple of sections open with a container to leave textiles. As I drove past it, a traffic jam appeared out of nowhere in the car park lane in front of me, forcing me to wait at the exit. Frustrated at having to waste yet more time when I just wanted to get home, I watched in the rear view mirror as another car pulled up at the recycling point and a man got out with a box of bottles. Curious now, I saw him pressing buttons at what I thought was the textiles point, so I reversed, parked and took my bottles to investigate.

It wasn’t closed up at all. It just wasn’t the usual recycling system I was used to, where you have a large container with a hole in it that you push bottles into – and a different container or section for each colour of bottle, or plastic or tin. No, this is just one large outer container with a multipurpose bucket that you put things in. The wonders of modern technology! Not only does the machine identify the items and save you time sorting them yourself, it also gives you green points on your loyalty card! Your items are collected and conveyed, much like a snacks vending machine, to the relevant bin, accompanied by a satisfying sound of smashing glass somewhere at the far end of the container.

(So it seems even traffic jams have their good points – if it hadn’t just suddenly appeared, literally as I reached the exit, I would no doubt still be under the mistaken impression the recycling point was closed up!)

Ok, this is a rather mundane example, but it got me thinking. If I can’t even recognise a recycling point when I’m specifically looking for it, what else am I missing in life or in work because I’ve got too fixed an idea of what it should be like? How do we help ourselves recognise the opportunities of change?