There are a few things I do to get perspective when I am stuck.
I walk around: I really enjoy walking around college campuses. They have a good mix of old and modern buildings. All beautiful. All full of character and life. When I want new perspective I make myself take different routes. Perspective is amazing. You can see different angles just by turning somewhere you haven’t turned before. This is how they do it in the movies. They look at different shots to see what is best, what evokes more emotion, what seems to fit their vision of excellence. We non-directors can do this too. A part of me feels silly when I think I am looking at a new building…when actually I am simply to the right of a building instead of it’s left side.
The other part of me knows that my mission is accomplished. It restores wonder. Coming into a courtyard at 45 degrees in revealed trees and flowers I didn’t see on my normal route. I feel rewarded with finding new angles. It uses very little energy unlike problem solving in my everyday life. It’s just fun without any expectation or requirement. I use my imagination in a contained and safe way. Sometimes I walk in a triangle or take on a different shape. I create games to keep things fresh and entertain myself. I notice that doing creative things make me better in other areas. As a dear friend recently explained to me, “how you do one thing, you do everything”. I was stuck creatively but then I just did one thing. Then I did another. And pretty soon I was flowing again. I hit a stride just by doing what I could handle.
Same can be said about walking around. I see different perspectives with my routes and surroundings and then I see different perspective with my strategic thinking. Beautiful!!! Love it:) Yay!!!!!!
It’s hard to enjoy one’s own company sometimes: I have gone through periods of my life when I love being with myself. It’s not a question of seclusion but rather, pure joy of spending time with my own thoughts. Other times I don’t want to be alone at all. I fill the void with lots of activity and lots of people. But again this is another way of saying I’m worthless. This is another way of avoiding the hard stuff. Cutting through the hard stuff for me is getting through to peace.
Meditation: I started meditating 10 minutes a day several months ago. I absolutely hated it in the beginning. I would burst out in tears as soon as the timer rang. Nobody told me how difficult it was. They just told me to do it and said how marvelous it is.
Meditating is really, really hard in the beginning. What I realize now is that I was releasing poison. It was so hard to intentionally sit there knowing I was stirring up a pot of emotions. It almost felt like a hatred exercise rather then a loving one. I called someone who had just gone to a meditation retreat in California. She went for a month to clear herself from a lot of toxic energy.
“Hey so…I’m bursting out crying everyday. Am I doing it right?”
“Yes you are. I had similar reactions in my first few weeks” she replied.
“Oh, everybody keeps telling me that they feel amazing and that life is so much better”
“Yeah maybe they just aren’t sharing that with you. Or maybe they forgot how hard it can be”.
Mediation Book Recommendation: I still find difficulty to mediate without judgement but I see results. That word results make me cringe because it is against the whole concept…but I will recommend a book called Real Happiness: The Power of Meditation: A 28 Day Program by Sharon Salzberg. I got it at Barnes and Nobles and it even came with a CD which includes guided meditation. It was helpful to listen to Sharon’s voice guiding me through the process so I focused on her a bit more then my racing thoughts.
Looky Looky, I got Hooky: Movies are a slice of life the creators chose to showcase. The film itself remains constant and as I change I go back and rewatch. It is a measurement tool for my growth, depth of understanding, compassion, and yes PERSPECTIVE. Most recently I watched Hook. It has been 22 years since the film’s release but I remembered a lot of scenes. It was so moving to watch Ruffio bow to Peter as he made his way back to his imagination. Watching it today made me look at it as an interesting commentary on “lost boys”. There are so many women’s conferences now that we often don’t include men and boys in the conversation. Patriarchy hurts men just as much as it hurts women. It may give voice to men but the voice has boundaries and expectations of what a man should be. This is a whole other topic. For now, I will say the endearing parts of Hook is sticking to me. And I like it!
I also liked watching a film without CGI. It was so cleaver how the boys suited up for battle, had a food fight, and even when the flowers smelled Robin Williams as he tried to hide.
So I hope you find simple ways to gain perspective, because my friends…I cannot be the only one who is looking.