October 26, 2013

Change is Opportunity. ~ Angie Webster

Everything Is Perspective

“We think that the point is to pass the test or to overcome the problem, but the truth is that things don’t really get solved. They come together and they fall apart.”

Pema Chödrön

Perspective can be a tricky thing. We all experience the world through our own filters, those we have in place through our parents, schools, government, religion and culture. We learn that which we live in, around and through. This gives us our current perspective. Whatever our current perspective is, that is the one that we believe is “right.”

But our perspectives are always changing. Many times we don’t recognize this until we look back on our lives years later. Then we can see that how think, talk, believe and express ourselves used to be very different. Our choices change, our behaviors follow. We move, change jobs, get married or divorced, have children, experience loss. All of these change our perspective.

In the midst of change, particularly a difficult change or loss, we rarely see anything but the turmoil and upheaval brought on by the change. We rarely stop and appreciate the opportunity we have before us. Many times we are grateful for the change, or something that opened up to us because of it—much later.

When we shift our perspective on purpose, we can experience that gratitude in the present.

We can experience it along with the turmoil and pain of change. That gratitude for what is and what may be can facilitate growth, healing and a sense of peace.

We tend to cling to our old perspective, the one we had before things changed, long after it functions well for us. We want things to go back to the way they were. When we do this, we are trying to hold onto our old thoughts, habits and beliefs in an attempt to re-create the way things used to be, even if it’s only in our thoughts and feelings. This seldom works and it never works for long. The disappointment of this can lead you to grieve the changes all over again. This grasping and clinging causes us pain. Telling ourselves that things should be the way they were hurts when they clearly are not that way. Life has unfolded into something new.

Even when you are punished, rejected, or lose everything, a new and different opportunity for growth has just presented itself. Actually, many new ones, as the possibilities are endless. Choices within every situation are necessary. Our choices and opportunities aren’t limited as much by circumstances as they are by our perspective.

Clinging to the old perspective doesn’t allow room for the new to come in. When we intentionally keep our perspective open and allowing for all the things we may experience, our choices and opportunities appear as if by magic. It can be a simple change of where you put your focus.

When it rains, some people complain, while others rejoice. What is the difference? It is their focus. It shifts their perspective to either the cold and the wetness, or to the refreshing, cleansing and nourishing aspects of rain. It’s the same rain. It either blesses you or curses you, solely depending on your focus and perspective.

Really there is no way to accurately judge a situation as either “good” or “bad”. There is the potential for both pleasant and unpleasant in each experience. What decides is where our perspective lies in that moment. Shift your perspective and shift your whole life.

All things will change.

That is a basic fact. We only create suffering when we resist this and try to cling to the old. Staying mindfully aware of the process and your feelings can open you to new understanding of yourself, your life and your place in it. It will help lead you to intentionally choose what you want to do in every moment, in your present and into the future.


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Assistant Ed: Gabriela Magana/Ed: Catherine Monkman

{Photo: Pinterest.}

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Angie Webster