Clearing the lenses — looking at things differently

Over time, I’ve found that expectations
–and who we are and where we came from–
color how we look at people.

It also can make for some
not-so-pleasant reactions
toward others.

It never ceases to amaze me how we can become so wrapped up in our own world and points of view that we forget we’re sharing this planet with 7 billion other people. And because we’re always in our own head, operating from our own worldview and way of thinking, we also forget that our way of thinking isn’t the only way of thinking.

How many times were you sitting at a table with someone, or watching TV, or driving in the car, and the person you’re with says something and your first reaction is: “How the hell can you think that?” copyright Adam Arroyo
copyright Adam Arroyo

Or, better yet, how about those times someone does something small, totally meaningless actually, that completely drives you nuts? To the point where you actually pick a fight over it?

I can tell you I have, and it’s something I work on every day (though not always successfully, but I try!).

Well, the other day I came across a little nugget of inspiration that stuck with me for those times someone else makes me react, and not positively.

Irked with someone?
Take a moment to look at the lens you’re looking through.
Is it cloudy? Clear it up. What do you see? copyright Anna Henryson
copyright Anna Henryson

These are simple words, but powerful ones. Because when we get annoyed with someone, odds are we aren’t looking at them, or what happened, through clear eyes. Eyes that want to see. Instead, we get wrapped up in our own heads and what we think is right, forgetting that someone else has an opinion that’s just as meaningful as ours.

So this is what I do when that happens. I try to understand what kind of lens I’m viewing through, and often I discover it’s clouded by misconceptions and perceptions that don’t always fit. I’ve found that when I take the time to understand my own lens, that initial knee-jerk reaction (the one that isn’t necessarily good for the moment or the relationship) fades, leaving me with a clear view of who I’m with and how I’m really reacting. And then I can respond (or not) in a much better way than originally intended.

So what about you? Do you find your lenses get clouded over when you’re dealing with others? That you think your lens is the only lens to be looked through? And when that happens, what do you do?


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About terriponce

I write about secrets, suspense, and soulmates.
This entry was posted in Stories Behind The Stories and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to Clearing the lenses — looking at things differently

  1. What a wonderful way of (ahem) looking at things (silly pun intended). Seriously though, I love it. I just have to remember it when I’m upset, which makes it harder 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Penn says:

    Nah! I use Australian made lenses.

    Slap! I couldn’t help myself! I had to say it!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. norasnowdon says:

    hey terri, great post! I’m very bad about looking at personal situations only as to how they affect me. oddly enough, I’m great at dissecting other people’s situations and figuring out why their loved ones are behaving in contrary ways–I think that’s the writer in me. but it would be much nicer for me if my friends and relatives just thought before they did anything, ‘hmm, what would nora do?’ and then acted accordingly. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Mark Morris says:

    Even worse, is when you’re looking at others through other peoples’ lenses; taking friends and colleagues opinions of another as being the truth when they could be as guilty or misseeing as anyone else. I know we all do it, it ‘saves’ us the time of getting to properly know another person ourselves, but it’s wrong.


    • terriponce says:

      So hard to remember… that another person’s opinion of someone else shouldn’t be taken for face value. Better to make our own opinion in time than pre-judge based on someone else’s thoughts.


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