This is a short piece from the article "10 Simple Ways to Make People Like You More" from Time.com. I'm not sure the meaning of the big picture highlighted here. Does it mean the bright side of life? So that a person will be more open to others if he sees the big picture? I appreciate any answer or enlightenment you guys post.

8.Lighten up

I will admit to struggling with this one. I’m a serious person with serious concerns! (Most of the time.) But it’s better to see the big picture in life. Really serious people are essentially acting selfish because they focus too much on their personal issues. Highly likable people at work are those who can set aside their concerns and go with the flow. They’re selfless.

  • If you google What does the big picture mean, you will find lots of material online. In short, it's an image that derives from the idea of zooming out from an object to everything surrounding the object. writingexplained.org/idiom-dictionary/the-big-picture Nov 9, 2019 at 14:09
  • @Ronald Sole Thanks Ronald, Yes I looked it up in both the link you attached and Cambridge Dictionary. I think it means the overall situations rather than details. Thank you.
    – Jesse
    Nov 10, 2019 at 4:15

1 Answer 1


Based on your comment I'd say you've understood the meaning. It is the overall situation rather than the details.

Another way to understand it is all of the details we can see in the 'picture' of our life, rather than just one detail. When we look at all the details of the situation together, rather than just the problem we're currently dealing with, our problem seems less important. The larger picture of our life is full of both good things and challenging things together and they tend to balance each other out.

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