“Perspective is everything when you are experiencing the challenges of life”.
– Joni Eareckson Tada
In the previous post I started ON PERSPECTIVES as the 25th lesson I learnt at 25 and I said I’d like to share two(2) nuggets that I’m practicing from the lesson. I hope it comes handy for you too.
Firstly, Vulnerability is a form of Strength
Just when you thought you’ve seen it all, felt it all, known it all. . . You’ll flip to another chapter, make a turn at a corner, meet someone new or even evolve. And it changes everything, you’ll realize you’re just a tyro. Still so many things to LEARN and UNLEARN, so many grey lines and edges to find on even black/white situations. Just a closer look at the equivocality on once-clear perspectives and you’ll start to question everything.
“Empathy begins with understanding life from another person’s perspective. Nobody has an objective experience of reality. It’s all through our own individual prisms”.
– Sterling K. Brown
Personally, this past year, I ran into issues that challenged my truth and had to unlearn some of the norms I grew up with. Lately, I’ve been embarking on personal transformation that makes me open to other’s opinions in a way that I’m willing to let go of my own truths, realities and ideas. But, perspectives made me reason that it’s okay to be vulnerable in this phase. Vulnerabilities isn’t about losing or winning, but having the courage to show up when you can’t control the outcome. And in relationships, it means allowing people the space to be flawed, afraid, wrong, right, confused, heard, uncertain. This doesn’t necessarily mean you are wrong or right nor are they either, but you’ll give room for dialogue and open your heart to new ways and sides to things.
“It’s just so cool when you meet people who are different than you are. That can give you a different perspective, a viewpoint on life, or inspire you. I mean, what would the world be like if we were all the same? I think it would be very boring”.
Secondly, Appreciative Inquiry
I recently did a 6 week course with University of Capetown on Social Innovation and one of the topics that has resonated with me is the Appreciative Inquiry and this is because it brought perspectives to mind too. History of psychological research has spent more time focusing and studying pathology, i.e. what’s wrong with humanity? Like Depression, Anxiety, Psychosis, etc. But in the early 90s, a psychologist, Martin Seligman change the narrative by questioning what would happen if we started looking at positive outliers? i.e. Unusually happy and creative people and the factors or things to make people happier, more creative and resilient.
It was discovered that unusually happy people tend to spend more time than most of us focusing on their own strengths and trying to develop those strengths rather focusing on what’s wrong with them, their weaknesses and other negative things that many of us are obsessed with.
As oppose to the traditional problem-solving approach that focuses on the gaps, what’s broken and how do I fix it? Appreciative inquiry focuses on your strengths, what works and what are your potentials?
“It’s not only moving that creates new starting points. Sometimes all it takes is a subtle shift in perspective, an opening of the mind, an intentional pause and reset, or a new route to start to see new options and new possibilities”.
– Kristin Armstrong
Consequently we’ll discuss these things more but I do hope you see the other sides to things or situations, question everything, see the strength in your weakness or focus on “what is” than “what could be”. Learning to see the grey areas and focusing on what you have as oppose what you don’t gives room to be more generative and more creative to address social and personal issues.
See you at 26! 😉