I am tall. Not quite as lofty as I was but still called upon by little old ladies in supermarkets. This isn’t news to me or to those who know me. I rarely think about it. I do bash my head in cottages, country pubs and stately homes, but this hardly constitutes a daily reminder.

Yet I have recently been made especially aware of my height. Firstly, a visit to the WW1 battlefields (specifically Beaumont-Hamel in the Somme) involved the chilling experience of walking in the actual dugouts from which the brave but doomed men of the Royal Newfoundland Regiment emerged on 1st July 1916. The excavations have reduced in depth since then, but our wonderful guide Diane Piuk did point out my natural vulnerability to sniper fire.

Add trench warrior to F1 driver and jockey as occupations not to pursue.

Secondly, I’m just back from a few days in Amsterdam (Springsteen and Vermeer, get me). Heavens the Dutch are tall. All that meat and dairy. A marquee concert and a once-in-a-lifetime art exhibition are tough viewing challenges anyway but almost impossible among giant Netherlanders.

In this case, I was grateful for my six feet five inches.

Thirdly, a friend suggested that, as a big bloke, I should write a blog about thinking tall. I’ve heard of standing tall as a leadership philosophy. I’m aware of social psychologist Amy Cuddy’s work on finding inner boldness through practising power poses. But tall thinking?!

Then it became clear. Thinking tall is a heads-up, eyes front, future-focussed take on the world. A running towards mindset rather than running away. Not necessarily optimistic but certainly open to more possibilities than a downward line of sight might expose.

And with the volume of depressing national and international news right now, who can argue against an inclination to navigate the present, where possible, though a longer-term lens?

Helpfully, these reflections chimed with reading Marshall Goldsmith’s The Earned Life.

I won’t do justice here to a highly stimulating book but, in the author’s words, “We are living an earned life when the choices, risks, and efforts we make in each moment align with an overarching purpose in our lives, regardless of eventual outcome.”

It’s not about achieving conventional goals, therefore, rather “of going all in on what matters” to us, improving the chances of a fulfilled life, unbound by regret.

Ask yourself: “Am I being the person I want to be right now?”

Tall thinking required.