So often we look at a situation only from one perspective. That perspective, whilst coming from your own experience, is not always the only way to view the situation.
What if you could look at it another way?
What if you did a 360 degree turn around and looked it from there?
Are you still with me? I don’t want to lose you, so let’s look at an example.
You were present in a room when someone walks in and starts yelling.
You hear anger, frustration and you become hyper-vigilant to anything that could be a potential threat. Fearing for your life you hot leg in out of the room.
Then later when you are recalling the situation to others in the room, you hear comments like:
“Really, that’s not what I saw. I saw Sam coming in desperate to help someone outside, it seemed a cut and dry emergency situation to me”
“No, that’s not what happened at all, Sam is deaf, he’d been outside in the noisy machine room, so when he came indoors he was still talking at high levels. It’s all good. I calmed him down easily enough”
You think to yourself, so how come I didn’t see it that way.
All three have given different descriptions of what happened. And that is OK. it is because each is seeing the situation from their own perspective. Each has his/her own unique set of perceptions and those perceptions are true for the individual. So there is no point in asking what “really” happened. What each person perceived is true for them.
When we only look from one perspective we are not looking at the whole. When we see something happen, we make meaning through our own eyes, our own experiences, hurts, traumas, energy, beliefs, teachings, perceptions, perspectives and DNA when we are interpreting any giving moment. We also process experiences in various ways. We also just see what is right in our own myopic view. Our brain creates a mental map of everything it saw, felt, heard, and based on it’s previous experience it gave us the perceived result. Each person in that room had their own interpretation, and each person believed they were right.
Here’s another example, and some action for you to take.
Imagine for a moment that you are a phone camera on the general view lens, you see only that space. Go ahead and look at a point on the horizon. Really focus on that point, and recall what you see.
Then imagine you are that same lens, but now you have the vision to see beyond the immediate point you can see. You’re now more like the “landscape’ lens.
So keep focusing on that point, and start to see what is in your peripheral vision. What is on the right, the left, above and below that actual point?
How much more can you see now?
Now imagine you are a drone camera lens. Now you can fly high up in the sky, and look down at the same point which you had been looking at. You can see for miles (or kilometres), you can see detail that was never available to you before, you can look at the past, and the future. Now you can see a different reality.
So it really is possible to view the same situation from many different perspectives. If you were to change your view point, then you could see something you were missing altogether.
So, how can you get better at different perspective-taking? Here’s an example I use in my coaching, it is called the 3-chair method (well at least that is what I call it).
Usually when I am in a room with someone, I gather 3 chairs, all facing one another. If I’m on zoom, I ask them to imagine the chairs, or once I got them to assemble the 3 chairs in their room.
Each chair represents a perspective.
1 – The observer
2 – YOU
3 – Other
Physically, or in your head, you play an imaginary game of perspective chairs and imagine sitting in each of 3 chairs of perspective:
- Your own perspective
- The other party’s perspective
- An impartial observer’s perspective
When I’m coaching, I ask them what’s happening when they sit in each chair. It is a powerful and very enlightening exercise. Take a moment before you react to a situation to “sit in another chair.”
So next time you believe your reality is your truth, ask yourself “it is really the whole truth?’. Try to seek another way of viewing the same situation. By creating habits of looking at different perspectives, you will have greater clarity, greater vision, and greater connection to others.
The only limitation is the one you have set up in your own mind Napoleon Hill.
Truth and Reality are Relative. The important thing is that you find what resonates with YOU, if it doesn’t then maybe you need to look at something from another perspective.
I promise you this will change your life, and you will start to impact those around you.
Having written this blog, and some time later, I came across this scientific podcast and youtube clip with Brian Cox and Robin Ince. Love it, so wanted to share with you all. What is Reality?
How can we ever know whether what one person perceives is exactly the same as what another person perceives. Is your sense of the world around you an illusion constructed by this extraordinary organ, the brain, that has no direct access to the outside world that it is helping you to understand.