I was searching for an adapter but couldn't find it anywhere! It wasn't in the basket where it belonged, nor in other 'logical' places. Perhaps I was missing something, so I called on a colleague for assistance. As I stepped back from the cupboard to provide her space, I imediately saw the missing adapter. 'I just needed a different perspective' I unconsciously stated. In taking a step backward, the whole cupboard came into view allowing me to see so much more.
The adapter had been in the cupboard the whole time, but remaining in the one position limited my vision. I was too close. It was only in stepping away that I was able to gain a greater perspective of where I was looking.
The same lesson applies to our wellbeing. Often we're too close to a situation or so fixated on a problem, a conversation, an outcome or a moment in time that we're unable to see it clearly. This laser focus is directing our vision to one place, with ignorant or unconscious disregard to wider implications and alternate options.
As our thoughts, our time, our energy and our words remain pinpointed on this situation and it's inability to be resolved or meet our expectations, the results begin to affect us. They fuel our emotions until we feel frustrated, sad, dejected or angry. The list goes on.
At these times, the ability to notice this happening is the first step to gaining a new perspective.
1. What's happening in your body or mind? How are you responding to your feelings? Are you clenching, tightening, snapping, yelling?
2. Acknowledge what you're focussing on. You've looked there. You've had that same conversation. You've tried that way before. That point of vision isn't serving you, so now what?
3. Literally or metaphorically, step back and gain a different perspective. If it's your child's behaviour, step back and breathe. If it's a conversation with a colleague, reschedule. If it's a past event you keep returning to, what else can you make this mean?
As one client describes herself, 'I always search for the silver linings'. When she couldn't find them anymore, she knew it was time to access an outside perspective. She needed someone to shine a torch where her light couldn't reach, so she could see a new reality. Your responsibility is to create that alternate perspective yourself, or seek assistance. We're not meant to do this thing called life (and emotions!) alone.
As you go about your days, engaging with family, friends, colleagues or even strangers, search for a silver lining that helps you see a different perspective and live the life you dream of.