Monday, November 17, 2008


I've heard the adage that "perspective changes everything" but I wasn't sure I believed it - until last week. I was talking with a mentor of mine and happened to mention that I was going to be involved in an event I was not looking forward to - in fact, I was loaded with negative feelings about this event. He asked me to name some of the perspectives in which I was viewing this event. I probed a bit on what he meant, and then just began to name a few of the the ways I was looking at the event.

I realized that after naming out loud a few of my perspectives, they were all negative - focused on other people, other influences, and other's behavior. Feeling I should name a "positive" perspective, I did so - AND THE LIGHT BULB WENT OFF! Suddenly it all made sense that one's perspective CAN change everything. I felt more in control of the event...I felt that there could be a positive outcome to the event...and I understood that I could make the event what I wanted/needed it to be based on MY perspective.

So what happened? It turned out okay! I went into the event with hope and anticipation, knowing what my role would be and how I would act in that role. Not only was I more positive about the event, I was more at ease throughout the event. And because of that, I was able to take on and maintain a leadership role that was beneficial to all involved. And the end result of the event turned out good...all because of a changed perspective.

Where might you need to find a new perspective today? Is it in a relationship with a co-worker or significant other? Is it in terms of your organization - or your role within that organization? Is it in a specific job that needs to get done? Is it about a meeting you have to have with a co-worker today? Is it about your children - or your own parents?

Consider multiple perspectives - and be sure to find one that is positive. Choose the perspective which will best help you build a relationship and accomplish your goals - and the goals of your organization. That seems to me to be a way to lead - and to make a difference in the lives of others and in the mission of your organization.

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