This feature shows how your perspective can transform your life. Things that don’t work or failure can result in even bigger, better outcomes. How can we let that happen for us?
Have you ever discovered or learned something that instantly changed your life? Perhaps a book, such as Daring Greatly by Brené Brown or The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle? Both these books show how our perspectives influence our lives.
Firstly, consider that everyone is already perfect. The only person who sees our own imperfections is our-self. What other people see is actually our attitude.
There are plenty of natural things that colour our perspective or bend it out of shape. Our view on life can be described like a car windscreen, which gets smeared with bird droppings. Next we clean our view with the windscreen wipers.
Imagine a spotless, dry windscreen on a sunny day when you can see everything ahead of you clearly. You see things exactly as they are. You look at reality and it seems fine.
As we get older, experiences, ideas and thoughts can clean the windscreens of our perspectives if we let them. Think of the Maslow triangle. By having a clean perspective, you gain instant self-actualization.
Psychology and the behavioural sciences have presented evidence that being overtly selfish holds us back. The human species has survived because of caring relationships, working together and sharing the proceeds, not through separate, self-sufficient individualism. Therefore, considering others means being able to work with them, and create bigger results.
Diversity and a Broader Perspective
Working with people from diverse backgrounds produces a wider perspective. You can tell a company with a narrow view when you visit their website. A company that thinks about its customers will provide clear and direct navigation for first time visitors. Websites are like map-reading. When you visit somewhere for the first time, you won’t recognise any landmarks. Therefore you have to follow the map. Signposts will direct you to your destination.
Privilege and Entitlement
One thing that dictates our perspective is privilege. We may have racial, gender, orientation, national or, particularly in the UK and America, class privilege. It will be hidden from our view as we have never seen the world without it. However, as soon as you see your privilege, you must give up the notion that you deserve it.
In fact, those with the least privilege are the closest to a healthy perspective. They have the least to give up. On the other hand, their is resentment. People may resent others with privilege over them.
For instance, a female sibling might resent a brother who does not work with them on joint projects. The brother, educated into male privilege and entitlement, will do his own independent thing, won’t take direction, will dismiss his sister’s contribution and ignore her results. To see the male privilege in the situation is transformational.
Resentment is the same as bearing a grudge. The problem with privilege is people do not see it. They might suffer from their lack of another privilege. Suffering is always relative. We have only seen a set of circumstances through our own eyes. However, we can go back and look at it from another perspective. Then it will be evident how different it might seem.
For instance, a male might say he is hard done by because of his social status. There are laws and policies that provide some people with privilege over others. This is institutional prejudice. For instance, the uneven-handed treatment meted out to different races in education, politics and justice. This may be by sexual orientation, gender, status or wealth. It is all prejudice.
If you asked runners in a race to turn around, the person at the back would now be in front. That would be a change of perspective. If you turn a cup around and see it has a handle on the other side, that is taking an opposite viewpoint.
The ultimate outcome to finding an healthy perspective is to experience the best of nature. As we all know, many things happen that cannot be explained. Therefore, to be controlling is to try to guarantee an outcome. This is also forcing an outcome. In nature, you cannot force an outcome. However, unrecognized privilege can influence an outcome unfairly.
Faith and belief do not require religion. We might think we need to know what we believe. We don’t as we do not know what it is. Nature is intangible. However, your perspective can guarantee a win-win situation. That is when you and others all benefit. No one has to lose for you to win.
Fundamentally, people who feel entitled will be disappointed. Entitlement is frequently followed by disappointment. It comes down to elevated expectations, either of oneself or of others. If they do not deliver, immediately it is doom and gloom. The silver lining will be ignored and wasted.
Essentially, next time you do something you have planned and it doesn’t work out, see what happens next. If you do not try to force an outcome, something unplanned, unexpected and even imagined might happen. This could be better than your original intention. How did that happen? It was purely based on your perspective.
Finally, our ego is our perspective on ourselves. If you always expect to win, losing can be upsetting or even offensive. Coincidence is part of nature. It can be likened to synchronicity. When you put yourself out there, as Brené Brown says in her Ted talk on Netflix, anything can happen. How you see these results is a matter of perspective.
My blog Dairyofanonnymoose has a piece about how humans can reconnect.