It strikes me that a lot of the challenges you encounter on a day-to-day basis involve navigating the notion and practical realities of distance.

Often distance may not be the word that comes to mind, but using it can be helpful to think differently.


Most obviously, distance comes up in terms of physical space. It is about the difference of positioning between distinct places in that space. Whether it is points in a plane, physical landmarks, GPS coordinates, et cetera. You care about the location of places, particularly in relation to others.

It matters, because you think contextually. Perhaps you want to determine how to go about going from one place to another or how long that would take. Sometimes you care about the distance, but not the place.

Of course, here and there mean different things in different contexts.


You can map out time as specific points on a line. Think back to you, an hour ago. Now, think again: You, ten years earlier. That seems long ago, perhaps a distant memory, whereas the former appears so close.

Similarly, try to imagine you, in the future, at different points of time.

When you think about how long ago or how far in the future, you are thinking about the distance between different points of time, whether they occurred in the past or might happen in the future.

Decisions made, actions taken and changes affected: Always over time.


Where there is human discourse, or more generally yet, where there is perceived reality, there are differences.

Whether physical objects (trees, houses, people, animals, mountains, et cetera) or conceptual (ideas, opinions, words, emotions, et cetera), unless two are the same, they fall somewhere on the spectrum from close together to far apart.

There is distance in difference. Likewise, there is nearness in similarity.

In complex environment, difference can occur along numerous dimensions at once – and so of course does distance.


Distance, as a concept is broadly applicable. It is there, when you consider problems to solve, decisions to make or generally, when you think about change — when there is a here and a there.


One response to “Distance”

  1. […] short that distance, because then using the shortcut would prevent us from achieving the goal. Distance comes in different forms, likewise shortcuts have different […]

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