A display case features two choices of eyeglasses. One pair of glasses shows the world as a dangerous place. The other pair shows the world as a place full of beauty and majesty that fills the viewer with gratitude. Which pair of glasses do we choose?
A recent blog described our perspective on life as a choice between the set of glasses that we wear each day. Glasses make a useful metaphor for our perspective, our point of view.
Thinking of our perspective as a set of glasses first draws our awareness to the fact that we have a perspective which colors our view of situations. Things are not always as they first seem. Just as a speck of dust on our lenses can disturb our view through our glasses, our past experiences and baggage can color our take on what happens in our lives.
Someone who feels generally positive and optimistic about things would see each new opportunity as manageable, even fun. A person who has been hurt, who is distrustful and cynical would approach a challenge as a bother, an annoyance and not much fun.
The glasses metaphor also underscores the idea of our perspective as a choice. We may not have a choice in whether or not we have a perspective. (Everyone does.) We do, though, have control over which perspective we adopt.
Just as there are many types and styles of glasses — from designer frames to cheap , disposable dollar-store pairs — there are an unlimited number of perspectives we can take. We can choose to look at life as a gift or a curse, an unpredictable thrill ride or a logically unfolding chain of events, a miserable and meaningless exercise or a wondrous journey of discovery and growth. We pick the perspective that suits us.
Finally, in thinking of our perspective as a set of glasses, we remember that our perspective is changeable. The glasses are not glued to our face. We can switch one pair for another. We have the ability to do that.
Let your attention go to your glasses. Which pair are you wearing right now? Are they the right pair for you in your space at this moment in time? is this perspective working for your life?
If you don’t like your glasses, change them. The change may make a world of difference.