What my smart phone has taught me about perspective taking.

What my smartphone has taught me about taking quick snapshots of anything: You’ve got to experiment with different angles.

It all started when I was complaining that my photos were all the same: front facing, looking out from my direct point of view, and taken at eye level. My kids said (with that slight note of frustration kids seem to have towards their parents’ approach to technology):  “If you want another perspective, you’ve got to try and actually experiment with different angles – move behind, over, higher, lower your subject, and choose before you just snap the shot!”

Wow. Isn’t that true also of the pictures we create in our minds of people and situations?

Often, and in most circumstances, we just go with our first reaction. It’s easier to accept what you see immediately than to actually take the time to explore the situation from different angles. Rarely do we intentionally put the effort into getting different perspectives on something.  How much better would our judgements and ideas be if we formed our thinking and feelings based on an expanded view and understanding of any given situation?

I think of a quote by the Irish playwright George Bernard Shaw:

If a man sees with only one eye, the world appears flat to him, objects and people become mere two-dimensional images. And he cannot discern any meaning in life beyond the crassness of superficial existence.  If he uses both eyes, he gains perspective and can perceive a third dimension of depth, ideas and activities assume relative importance and value, and he understands that there is now more than one way of living.  How deep his understanding and how acute his perception, then, if he sees through four or six or seven different eyes, each distinct and yet each focused on the same situation and the same conflict.

What would change if we tested different perspectives before making a snapshot?

All the Best,

Screen Shot 2017-10-11 at 6.04.50 PM

Leave a Reply