“The only thing you sometimes have control over is perspective. You don't have control over your situation. But you have a choice about how you view it.” - Chris Pine
Through life's ups and downs, one of the lessons I have learned is that it's all about your perspective. The way you look at your past, present and future experiences will determine the direction your life will go. I have always been intrigued by how people see different things in the same picture or remember details differently following the same event.
Your perspective is something you can learn to manage. The good news is that once you become aware you can continually change and broaden your perspective. In this blog post, I'll share definitions of perspective as well as tips for broadening your perspective.
What is perspective?
What perspective means to me?
Transitions have been one constant part of my journey so far. I've had a fair mix of the good, the bad and the ugly. And yes, I still feel stuck sometimes. If you asked me what has helped me on my journey, I'd say adjusting my perspective. It is a practice that I have adopted successfully in my personal and professional life.
I have learned that you need to regularly sit down and have a conversation with yourself about your perspective. Periodically evaluate where you are and where you are going. Especially at times when I feel disappointed with my progress, I remind myself that it's all temporary and will get better.
How to broaden your perspective
Here are six great tips for you to expand and adjust your view.
Tip 1: Look at things differently - Why am I currently going through this situation?
In life, you will be more successful if you perceive challenges as opportunities. Are you looking at a challenge as a barrier or as a stepping stone to your next phase? I'm motivated daily by looking at my experiences as a stepping stone on my journey. Even when I don't understand why things happen and how they fit in the plan, I am confident that if I make the best out of my situation, the result will be positive.
Tip 2: Learn from your experiences - What can I learn from different situations?
There's a lot to learn from every experience in life. On our journey, the most valuable trait we all need is "willingness to improve." If we don't learn from our experiences, we are bound to repeat mistakes and not make progress. Having a mindset of wanting to learn on your journey will help you see things differently.
Tip 3: Seek an outside view - What are my trusted people thinking and saying?
Especially in stressful situations, your view might be limited. An excellent tool you should apply here will be to "borrow" someone's eyes. Situations that look hopeless through your eyes might seem very different through a trusted friend's eyes. Share your struggles and listen to their viewpoint. You will discover some great insights that you would not have had on your own. Caution: choose people whom you trust, who are honest and have a positive outlook on life.
Tip 4: Stay open - How would I think about this situation or decision in a few months?
Over time you gain different views. Keep an open mind and don't shut the door to any opportunity permanently. An opportunity today will look very different in a few months. A job position you don't feel ready for might seem doable if you look at it again after some months. Surrounding factors may change and make you feel more empowered to take on a new opportunity. Take advantage of the possibility to reevaluate and take on new opportunities.
Tip 5: Refocus on the higher goal - What am I working towards?
We get caught up in our day to day and forget about our bigger goals, dreams, and ambitions. When you start feeling lost, look at your vision board and review your goals. Remember the big picture and what you are working towards. Whatever you are going through today is only a snapshot in time. There is more to come.
Tip 6: Get external Inspiration - How can I expand my view?
Especially when I start feeling stuck, I know it's time for me to get out of my head and get external inspiration. If you feel stuck, I encourage you to expand your perspective by reading something new, listening to a podcast, attending events, learning a new skill and socializing with positive people. There is power in seeing things differently by observing other people. It's crucial to benefit from the vast external resources to help you refocus regularly.
What is your perspective on life? Ask yourself these questions and write down your answers.