1. Through a personal lens, which is distorted due to emotion or incorrect information.
2. As it actually is.
3. As it could be.
Seeing the world through your own personal lens is the most common way of looking at things. It’s why two people watching a political debate can have completely different reactions. They already have a view of the world and what is being said filters through that world view.
Seeing with world with intense realism is harder, but necessary to do great work. Just because you’ve invested hours, days, or years into a project doesn’t necessarily mean that other people are going to love it. You have to be able to detach yourself from your work and see it for what it actually is.
Seeing things as they could be is the role of the dreamer and the creator. While the dreamer eventually comes to live in frustration due to seeing how things could be better but never doing anything about it, the creator has a vision and acts upon it.
I think you need a combination of all three for a successful project, though I’d give more weight behind #2 and #3. Your vision of the world is like a spice that’s added to a meal. It can make a boring piece of meat taste amazing, but you’ve got to have a solid piece of meat (realistic view of the world) to begin with.
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