Planetary Perspectives

John Picciuto
2 min readJul 13, 2022


On 7/11/22 the very first images from the James Webb Telescope were shared by Nasa. The image above was one that absolutely blew my mind.

“The vast universe covers a patch of sky approximately the size of a grain of sand held at arm’s length by someone on the ground.”

Does something like that hit you the way that it hits me? When I look at a photograph like that and contemplate the sheer size of what we’re looking at it makes me feel so small. And yet, weirdly incredibly important? Like the sheer audacity or improbability that you and I merely exist is mind numbingly amazing. These kinds of things are weirdly life affirming for me. They throw into perspective all that is important, and toss out all that is not.

I think what’s nice when you get these sort of planetary perspectives is how you can use them to reframe your present life. What I mean by that is, when you get a real glimpse at the luck involved in you and I being alive, it gives you a chance to be mindful of what is happening in your life. At time, life flies by and it’s easy to get caught up in the rat race of life, but it does help to have this ever present reminder just how lucky we are to be here. And sadly just how fleeting our time existing is.

When you look at something so vast so outrageous and beautiful can you possibly have any negative thoughts? Can you look at that and think anything else besides how sheerly lucky and blessed you are?

I can’t.

You know, as you get older and older in life the road in front of you gets shorter. You tend to look back more often than you do forward because the time you have left is less than the time you’ve lived. The tug of the past and the memories in them is really strong and it’s easy for Life to feel like a blur.

It’s easy to let life pass you by. It’s easy to not be present and mindful of the path you’re on and the life you’re living. We have PLENTY of distractions. When I see these incredible photographs from the James Webb Telescope the The thing I keep coming back to is I’m gonna make it. My dreams are going to come true. Ultimately there is no other option. I’m here for a reason and I’m lucky enough to have found that purpose.

Have you?



John Picciuto

Storyteller, Photographer, and host of The Wrong Advice Podcast. You can find more of my work at