Having the ‘Right’ Perspective on Life

“Dream delivers us to dream, and there is no end to illusion. Life is like a train of moods like a string of beads, and as we pass through them, they prove to be many-colored lenses which paint the world their own hue….” —Ralph Waldo Emerson

Everything in life is about perspective. Have there been times when you have formed an idea about something, be absolutely sure that you were right, but only to have someone else provide a piece of information that you did not previously consider, thereby making you rethink your initial stance and cause you to have a new perspective on the issue?

Woman looking into the sky

There is a constant struggle between how we look at things around us and what we actually do see in them in life. If you see something as scary, it is only natural that you’ll approach it with caution. On the other hand, you become more relaxed when you are confident and hopeful about a situation. It is only natural that your perspective of a situation influences your reaction to it.

“If you look the right way, you can see that the whole world is a garden.”

— Frances Hodgson Burnett

It is what you choose to see that you will see. Some people see the color purple, and others see red; some see black, others see white. While others see all the colors of the rainbow, some choose to be color-blind.

“To be aware of a single shortcoming within oneself is more useful than to be aware of a thousand in somebody else. Rather than speaking badly about people and in ways that will produce friction and unrest in their lives, we should practice a purer perception of them, and when we speak of others, speak of their good qualities.” — Dalai lama

According to Buddhism, to be perfect, there are two qualities one needs to develop: compassion and wisdom. As evolving human beings, we should task our minds to grow every day. This will require a constant effort at practising mindfulness and self-introspection. The right perspectives can only be formed when we become aware of our thoughts and then deeply inquire about how these thoughts were formed. We can only make better decisions when we have a clear view of the origins of our own thinking.

Perspective Influences Perception

“Our perception of reality is malleable. Everything is always shifting. We may not have the power to change an event, but we do have the power to change our perspective.”  Stephanee Killen

Simply put, our perception is determined by our perspective. Perception is simply the knowledge gained by what our perspective has taught us. The level of our perspective will determine how our perception can be measured.

“The most important decision you will ever make is whether you live in a hostile or friendly universe. Perspective is everything. What you go looking for, you find.” — Albert Einstein

Our feeling of happiness or sadness can color the interpretation we have of a situation. For instance, seeing the people we know chatting and laughing can be viewed from two completely different perspectives, depending on how we feel. On a bad day, we may feel uneasy, sensitive, and convinced that they are laughing at us. We may already be feeling unhappy and embarrassed because of the negative mindset we already have because witnessing their laughter reinforces our fragile perspective and mindset. This is why it is crucial to always have a positive perspective at all times.

“Never write about a place until you are away from it, because that gives you perspective.” — Ernest Hemingway

It may be surprising to find out that what you think is fact or the truth is actually not. Perception is like a concept from the point of view of various blind people holding at different parts of an elephant. What they think they are touching will be determined by what part of the animal they can touch. What each blind person thinks they’re holding may be different from what they are actually holding. Therefore, only when you accept that your perception may be false can you actually find the right perspective.

“If the doors of perception were cleansed, everything would appear to man as it is – infinite.” — William Blake

Our inner dialogue and personal circumstances often influence our perspective. Gaining perspective about life also affects the way we interpret the behaviors of other people. The right mentality, mindset, and perspective make all the difference and greatly influence how we choose to respond. It is crucial to always live your life by following the right perceptions.

How Do You Achieve The Best Perspective?

“Everything we hear is an opinion, not a fact. Everything we see is a perspective, not the truth.” — Marcus Aurelius

Allowing negative thoughts to take charge of your mind and feeling stressed at a chronic level can be really frustrating. Therefore, you need to understand how to change your perspective. Here are some steps to achieving better and more positive thinking.

Rainy day

Stop Thinking in Terms of “Should”

“It is a narrow mind which cannot look at a subject from various points of view.” — George Eliot

A person who is willing to improve and change their negative perspective to positive should be willing to observe things from various viewpoints. A person who sticks only to their own perspective and viewpoint will only remain stagnant; there will not be intellectual development. We are in a world where things are moving pretty fast, and it takes being broad-minded to be able to catch up.

“We should always be asking ourselves: ‘Is this something that is, or is not, in my control?” — Epictetus

Some of the technological advancements we are enjoying today were thought to be impossible thirty years ago. The telephone was a perfect invention, but there were further improvements, and today we are enjoying the use of mobile phones. Imagine a world where we are stuck with telephone technology alone, a world with no mobile phones or internet facilities. Of course, it would seem like a perfect world to someone who has not conceived the idea of better technology, but someone who has seen the possibility of an improvement will continue to strive for better technology.

“One person’s craziness is another person’s reality.” — Tim Burton

The best things in life are often illogical. Sometimes, it is good not to make too much sense because such nice things like beauty, love, and goodness do not make absolute sense, but that does not mean that we cannot celebrate them. Sometimes your perspective view should not be logical but always consider things from various points of view.

Consider various points of view

“To change ourselves effectively, we first had to change our perception.” — Stephen R. Covey

The only way we can really improve is when we are ready to change our perception. And the only way we can change our perception is if we accept that what we believe may not actually be the right thing.

“The greatest tragedy for any human being is going through their entire lives believing the only perspective that matters is their own.” — Doug Baldwin

Going by the above quote, to go ahead in life and have a healthy relationship with other people, you should always be ready to consider a wider perspective. When you believe only in your own perspective, you will lose many opportunities because that belief you have on your own perception alone will cloud you from seeing better opportunities. Even when these opportunities are presented before you, it will be hard for you to appreciate them because you believe that only your own perspective is the best.

“However beautiful the strategy, you should occasionally look at the results.” — Winston Churchill

When you decide to go into a business, especially one that you have not really had any serious experience with before, it is best to seek other people’s ideas. You may run that business to the ground if you decide to work only on your own wisdom alone. No man is an island. The best way to improve your own perspective is by being open to changes and accepting that some people know better than you.

Take a step back and look for Something Positive

“The smallest change in perspective can change a life.” — Oprah Winfrey

If we choose to look at most things as scary, we are likely to behave more cautiously, measured and apprehensive. Feeling scared or nervous can prevent us from trying hard enough. We tend to protect ourselves by not attempting to step too far from our comfort zone. However, we could instead treat setbacks as learning points or minor hurdles, often making us hardly notice the negativity we initially nurture. We won’t have to think twice as our concentration flows into searching for solutions or options to keep going.

“The optimist sees the donut, the pessimist sees the hole.” — Oscar Wilde

There’s always a saying that if you expect something to become hard or bad, then that is how it’s going to be. Our doors of perception will determine what comes into our minds. Things work for us according to the kind of mindset we channel on them.

Ask Questions

“Continuous improvement is better than delayed perfection.” — Mark Twain

When we discuss our feelings about something and share our approach with others, we expand our minds. We are laying down the foundation of how our thought processes work and what our higher perspective about life is. Not everything appears exactly the way they are. That is why it is advised not to judge a book by its cover.  

“The more powerful and original a mind, the more it will incline toward the religion of solitude.” — Aldous Huxley

Some people are automatically programmed to be negative because their minds have been conditioned to believe that things are bound to go wrong, and thus they seem to always look out for the worst. However, some think differently and always have positive mindsets. Our outlook determines beforehand how we let external conditions influence us. This is why it is essential to have a good and deep perspective.

“The new voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes.” — Marcel Proust

Taking time to ask questions and being truly interested in knowing the answers, and showing enough care to understand what’s being said is also very relevant in supporting developing the right perspective. Information, interest, knowledge and genuine discussion give us enough avenues to explore other opinions and viewpoints. Mental growth occurs whenever we respectfully question and understand the attitudes, views and ideas of other people. Tolerance, mindfulness and patience are a major part of this approach.

Balloons flying in sky

Embrace Positivity

“If you correct your mind, the rest of your life will fall into place.” — Lao Tzu

Constantly comparing yourself with other people will get you nowhere. It would be best if you channelled the time you are using to do that into cultivating your passion for a world-changing opportunity. By repairing your mind, everything in your life will work together for good on your behalf.

“Perpetual optimism is a force multiplier.” — Colin Powell

To achieve the best in life and live happier, you have to replace all your negative mindsets with positive thinking. Your thought processes are actually what define you, and they are what will determine whether life will treat you well or otherwise.

“There is only a perspective seeing, only a perspective ‘Knowing’; and the more affects we allow to speak about one thing, the more eyes, different eyes, we can use to observe one thing, the more complete will our ‘concept’ of this thing, our ‘objectivity’ be” — Friedrich Nietzsche

Putting life into perspective keeps our minds adaptable and flexible; this is an important part of staying tolerant of other happenings in the world.

It is imperative to listen to a new perspective and also be ready to change your mindset to the best perspective that will work for you. If you only see problems, you will keep being riddled with one problem or the other. On the other hand, if you see problems as opportunities, you will find an abundance of opportunities worth looking into.

To lead a successful life, you need to think with the mindset of success. Positive attracts positivity. By developing the right mindset for success, you will automatically pivot yourself to the next level of your goal. Do not make your hope a sailing ship but instead an anchor, and in so doing, your perspective on life will be improved.