How big a swing do we need to make it feel like it matters?

At the casino, some folks play with $5 chips, some with $100 chips. Do the high rollers have more fun? Are they more engaged?

It’s natural to imagine that bigger swings matter more. That a bigger audience means our standup needs to be better, or a bigger investment is a signal that our business matters more.

More and better aren’t the same.

There are very few projects that have an impact on every human. Most are more local than that. Winning the regional Math Olympiad can feel just as important as winning the Super Bowl, and entire countries will be unaware of both events.

If you need it to feel like life or death for the work to matter, the problem might not be that you don’t get enough near-death opportunities. It might be that you’ve signed up to work in crisis mode.