If in hindsight we can see our trials of yesterday were exactly what we needed for today, perhaps we can create a new perspective on our trials of today.
I shared this thought with a friend last week and it has really stuck with me. You know, kinda like “hindsight is 2020.”
I realize by now the whole 2020 vision thing is totally overdone, but that doesn’t mean it’s not accurate.
Perspective is more than just a perspective, it really is one of the most precious gifts we can give… to others and to ourselves.
Let’s look at this a little deeper with this thought from C. JoyBell C., who calls herself a “philosophical essayist, cultural critic, spearhead thinker, science writer, business investor, counselor, mentor and author.”
“One of the best gifts you can give to someone, is a wider perspective. It’s also one of the best gifts you can receive. So if you have given someone a wider perspective, don’t feel bad about it (about taking their blindfolds off and having to watch them cringe in the newfound sunlight); I know it’s hard, but you’re doing them a lasting favor. And a wider perspective can be difficult for you yourself to accept, in the beginning (during the time that you squint while the sunlight stings your own eyes), but later you’ll find yourself coming back to it, even if you abandoned it as something worthless; you’ll look for it, one day. Or it will grow on you. Perspective.”
Sometimes perspective may feel like you’ve just taken off a blindfold, or more like blinding sunlight streaming brightly in your face.
What will make the difference?
THE LENSES OF LIFE
Let’s get a perspective on perspective from Stephen Covey from his “7 Habits” book.
“We must look at the lens through which we see the world, as well as the world we see, and that the lens itself shapes how we interpret the world.”
The most impactful lens we see the world through is that of our own experiences. Note, I didn’t say the “most correct lens” or the “right lens.” Sometimes our own experiences are not always correct nor do they always offer the “right” perspective. But neither does it mean your experiences are wrong.
They are simply that. Your experiences. And they create the most impactful lens we see life through.
Some of the other lenses we may interpret life through could include how we were raised and the impact on our personal values, socioeconomic status, race, religion, sexuality, education, and political affiliation. The list could go on.
Again, these are neither good nor bad.
They just are.
I simply ask you to think about what lenses you view life through and do those lenses serve you well.
EXPAND OR SHRINK
The great thing about perspective, we can always shift it.
We can climb the mountains to get a higher view. We can crawl on the ground to get a lower view. And we can walk a mile in the shoes of another to get their view.
One of the intentional perspective shifts I have taken since COVID hit has been to focus on “expanding into opportunities rather than shrinking into limitations.”
To make this shift, I had to first change how I see, feel, and love myself. The perspective from this new vantage point is incredible! And if I can change how I see myself, you can as well!
You can change how you see yourself, how you feel about yourselves, and how you love yourself. Maybe that’s what Martha Washington meant by our happiness is dependant on our disposition more than our circumstances.
“I am still determined to be cheerful and to be happy in whatever situation. I may be, for I have also learnt from experience that the greater part of our happiness or misery depends upon our dispositions and not upon our circumstances.”
As my friend and mentor Jamie Carrier eloquently teaches, “Circumstances might be outside of our control, but choices are ours.”
How can you make better choices no matter your circumstances?
My friend Max Brown espouses a very simple principle in life.
As one of the world’s leading business consultants, Max forever teaches this one principle.
It may seem too simple. It may even seem childish to consider kindness as a solution to all the hurt and anger in life.
Yet, maybe a simple solution is exactly what we need.
When we choose to listen, care, and love others, no matter their situation or station in life, we will be richly blessed by the perspective we gain. In turn, we will be a blessing to others as well.
Kindness does matter and I hope you are each blessed to feel much more of it.
Have a great Monday! Thanks for letting me share!
p.s. Take 13 minutes today to intentionally focus on how you will shift your perspective.
Photo by Free-Photos from Pixabay
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