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We recently spent a week on the west coast of Mexico. Fishing has sustained families for millenia up and down this coast. Small fishing villages still exist though many have grown with tourism and expats. The local fishing folk still ply the trade as well as sell boat tours and take gringos deep sea fishing.

Several times over the years I have heard them say, “We go out about a mile to catch the good ones.”

As a landlubber, I stand on the beach with the waves lapping my shins wondering, “How far out is a mile?”

Sounds like a stupid question right?

A mile is a mile stupid!

My question is really this: As I look at the horizon across nothing but water, how do I know where a mile out would be? I see lots of fishing boats bobbing around out there. Are they a mile out? It’s hard to know without perspective or a seaman’s experience.

So my question became: How far out is the horizon I can see? That might help me estimate the mile-out point.

At one foot from sea level. About where the surf laps my shins. The visible horizon is less than 2 kilometres away. Only a mile or so!

Now here’s the crazy thing. Go up 100 feet. Say from the balcony of our room. Now the visible horizon is almost 20 Kilometres away!

The visible horizon is like our vision or goals. It’s the place we want to be. That thing that pulls us forward through the waves and storms that will come.

If our view is too low, like standing on the beach, our vision is really short. Our goals unworthy.

If we climb a bit higher and get above our day-to-day working “in” our business mode we can see much further.

Our vision improves and possibilities expand exponentially.

Business coaching, team strategy and visioning exercises and long range planning help us get a bit higher. Sometimes we have to stand on our coaches or mentors shoulders to see further than our current experience permits.

Climbing up the 100 feet to our balcony from the beach increases the distance we can see over 10 times.

Our coach and other tools gives us the extra 100 feet and expands our vision by at least tenfold.

Now I know roughly where a mile out would be. I guess I have to get back to Mexico soon to test my theories!