perspective

Recently, I’ve been thinking about perspective.

I’ve found a new therapist. This is my 6th therapist. Reasons for so many are for a couple of different reasons. 1. I’ve moved and 2. I like to get different perspectives.

Therapy for me isn’t necessarily necessary. It’s something that I thoroughly enjoy and gain much growth from. So, with that, I’d like to share some thoughts about perspective.

When beginning with a new therapist, there’s always a lot of ground to cover. And as time progresses and as you change, your personal story changes. There is more history to cover. What was important then may not be important now, and vice versa.

I’ve become very good at summarizing things as I’ve gotten older. Not that the details aren’t important, it’s just that now I’m more able to see things from a bird’s eye view….and that, what I’ve realized, is what I’ve always wanted to be able to do and I want to continue to become better at…that being, a surveyor, for lack of a better term.

I think I’ve done so much therapy that I’m able to survey things quicker. My new therapist is the one who brought that to my attention (though I had noticed it myself). I likened it to two different analogies - GOD I LOVE ANALOGIES. The first is to be like a bird gliding over the savannah, surveying the world, seeing the paths, seeing what lies over yonder, how far you’ve flown, how big or small things really are. The second analogy is one I’ve talked about on here before which is pointillism. Georges Seurat was the grandfather of this art form. Thousands of tiny, colorful dots compiled to create a larger picture.

“Alfalfa Fields Saint Denis” - Georges Seurat, 1885-86

It seems that when we’re in the thick of everything, be it the singular dot surrounded by thousands of dots right in our face… or the bird on the ground surrounded by all the blades of grass and hooves of grazing land mammals and bugs and dirt, we become lost. We lose sight. We lose our perspective. It isn’t until we step back from the painting or take off to the sky that we can see the whole.

It’s hard to gain and keep perspective. What are we supposed to think about all of this? I mean, like, ALL of this? There is a lot of information to process! How do I feel about this? What do I think about that? What does it all mean? Why can’t I be unaffected? People pay big bucks for others to make sense of things. It’s overwhelming.

I do feel that we can grasp it all. It’s just to what level that we do. If everything is connected and all the dots make one big picture, then why is it so hard to see it? Why is it so hard to rise above all the noise and look at things objectively?

I feel that in today’s age, we are absolutely inundated by dots. In fact, I wanted to write this post right when I got home this evening but was totally distracted by link after link, photo after photo, tweet after tweet, video after video, that I’m just now reeling myself in to make sense of it all.

It seems that the times that I’m feeling the most calm and happy are the moments when I feel I have perspective.
To get to this place, I sometimes have to meditate. Most of the time, I just like to be alone and process. That may be the introvert in me. If I can’t have this time to gain perspective, I become irritable, disconnected, and overwhelmed.

So, I’ve learned to do it better and quicker, which just takes time and practice like most everything.
Empathy helps a lot.
Putting yourself in someone else’s shoes is one of the best ways to get perspective. Understanding someone’s story or even just accepting that you can’t possibly understand can help greatly with perspective. And on the flip side of this, you must remember what it’s like to really be in your shoes. To be empathetic for yourself. It sounds a little weird, but most people have no idea what is actually going on in their lives. Hence why so many of us seek therapy.
We need help to gain perspective on ourselves. We need someone else to step into our shoes and walk a mile so that we can observe them and collect the data.
Crazy, right?!

Maybe that’s what we all need to do. Maybe we all need to take a deep breath, step back from the painting or glide over the savannah and see the whole.
Maybe what seems so big isn’t really big at all. Maybe what seems like cacophony is just a song waiting to be born.
Rise above.

It seems Georges Seraut had a point…. get it?! buh duh splash!