HSSS | Shifting Lenses: Another Look at Your Life | What aspect of your life would you focus on if you could take a snapshot of it right now and then magnify it to show everyone the details? Would it be something that’s giving you a lot of trouble right now, or maybe a happy memory, or a friendship that is meaningful to you?
What would you call your photo’s movie adaptation? Do you hope this experience lasts forever or do you wish it had never begun? Would you want to go back in time and relive this experience? Why or why not?
Visualizing our lives as if they were a movie or a photograph allows us to take stock of the positive and negative aspects of our existence. When we give meaningful experiences names, we are better able to recall them, and more specifically the ones that have had a lasting impact on us.
Just as in photography, when you take a picture of a scene using a wide angle, you see much of the scene but very little of the detail, and when you zoom in on one part of the picture, you get a clear view of the part that really interests you but miss out on the big picture; the same is for how we often view life. Sometimes we lose sight of the greater picture and neglect the smaller, more interesting pieces of life. While other times we obsess on one item and fail to see the broad perspective. If we simply consider life from a single perspective, we run the risk of limiting our understanding. To fully comprehend the events that have transpired in our lives, we need both points of view, which is the reason for assigning a title to it.
Recall the image you were thinking of earlier, and take another look at the scenario. How does the picture change as you get closer or farther away? If the image is upsetting when you look at it up close, perhaps zooming out to get some distance and some perspective will help. Is there any way this may shift our understanding?
When we isolate a problem and dwell on it, we may feel upset. But if we step back and put it in context with other issues or events, we may be able to better cope with it and even gain valuable insight. Similarly, if we simply see our lives from afar, we fail to recognize the unique and personal aspects that make each of our lives worthwhile.