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Holidays are great for doing jigsaw puzzles.

The more I reflect on the jigsaw puzzle process there’s so much to appreciate. This is what I have identified from doing jigsaw puzzles over the years.

  • You may not have any idea where to start but it’s important to just make a start. It can be overwhelming but if you do some preparation, putting it all together can make it easier. For instance, organising borders and edge pieces from the inside pieces is hugely beneficial. You could also separate colours, objects or parts of the landscape of the jigsaw and work on these first. Eventually, the jigsaw will join up. Trust the process.
  • Sometimes there is no logical place to start. Just select a piece and try to see if the others fit around it. All you need is one piece to make a start. Watch it grow from there.
  • Jigsaws help you get into the zone of flow. Flow helps increase concentration and joy which leads to a quiet confidence as you start the journey to complete a 1000 piece puzzle. Flow theorist Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, talks about how increased flow brings you happiness. It does! Reflect on the times you are in flow. It can be work or sports related or a creative pursuit such as dancing, painting or drawing.
  • There are times when you are not able to see the next step because the jigsaw piece you need hasn’t revealed itself to you. All you can do is keep going. You need the piece. It will eventually show up. In the meantime, do what you can do. Once you find ‘the’ piece it will connect you to another part of the puzzle just like business and life. Sometimes key things cannot be seen or revealed until all steps to that point are taken and completed.
  • Sometimes you can do it on your own and at other times you need to call in help. Find the right buddy and watch that puzzle grow in no time!
  • When it’s all finished you take a step back and appreciate all that you have done. You remember how you didn’t know where to start but somehow you did and you accomplished something fabulous. The finished product. It’s perfect! You savor the moment and perhaps share your joy of completion with others.
  • Once completed you have a choice. Leave it and come back to it from time to time to admire or break it up and start again. Jigsaws are a great lesson in impermanence – nothing lasts forever.

It takes courage to make a start on a jigsaw just like in business or a life situation. You lay each piece on the table, setting up a foundation. Eventually they join. If not, you find another way to make the connection for a solid foundation. It’s ok if you make mistakes as mistakes are part of the learning and it’s also ok to walk away. Know this and you won’t be so afraid. There will be times when you think a piece will fit – and it won’t, while at other times a piece you think won’t work, fits perfectly. Life and business are a bit like that.

Image by Sana Turnock

www.courageunravelled.com