The 6 Work & Life Lessons I Learned From Observing Streetphotographers in Sicily

Keeping Your Eye, Soul, And Mind In Focus In The Viewfinder Of The Life You Choose

Claudia Brose
7 min readMay 4


photo © Claudia Brose | Palermo, Sicily 2023

When you are standing in the middle of a crazy brimming food and clothes market with narrow pathways, shouting merchants, pushing customers, and Vespas trying to pass through, you might find this vibrating environment exciting on one hand but difficult to navigate on the other. It is overwhelming to all your senses, your vision, sense of smell, and hearing.

That’s how I felt while moving through historic food markets last week in Palermo, Sicily. This market was a fifty-fold increase from a walk in New York City and felt almost like a training camp for chaos theory.

For our Street Photography students, it certainly WAS a training camp for learning how to capture the essence of life in Palermo and how to pick and tell a story in the middle of chaos. Palermo is a city full of people, Vespas, cars, Tuk-tuks, and scooters non-stop moving in a self-organizing chaotic flow.

I find it generally difficult to focus my attention amid noise and chaos around me. It is also not always easy to concentrate on the essentials and ignoring everything else.

But watching the photography students and listening to the photographer instructor, I learned a lot about focusing on what is important and I was reminded of the many ways how we can focus on the essentials.

Here are 6 methods to focus your attention when overwhelmed that I learned from photographers — great lessons you can transfer to your work or business.

1. Just Start To Break The Path

One of the photography students stood in the buzzing market and was so overwhelmed by all the business and endless visual stimulations that she didn’t know where to point the camera. She was unsure what to capture, and which story of the market to tell because there were so many.

When we gathered the group after an hour to share their first experiences, she hadn’t shot one picture.

The instructor encouraged her to “just shoot”, and just start photographing SOMETHING to break the barrier…



Claudia Brose

Writer, Event-Creator, Marketing Professional turned Rebel against a rushed world | Japan mad | Cyclist | #Self-Awareness #Lifestyle #Mindset |