30,000 ft. | Above Colorado
At certain places and certain times, most often when we are far removed from technology, and the normalcy of life. Maybe under a set of stars or adrift in an endless ocean, watching a sunset or walking in the rain, we see the world for what it truly is. The planet, life, our life, all life through a different lens and sometimes, even if just for a moment we can see the true divine game that is unfolding around us, this true meaning and connective-ness of the universe. Even if we have no words or ability to even describe this feeling, thats ok, because these direct experiences are life, they are the truth, the are exactly what you are living for and trying to describe and strive for everyday of your life. It is the indescribable that is precisely everything you are doing day in and day out, its all connected, part of the same dance. In short. You are the god you seek. Sometimes you just have to look at things a little differently, perhaps… even change your perspective. -mat
Leaving Denver I look out the small frosty window at the tops of the rocky peaks 20,000 feet below and breathe deeply in this sanctuary as the madness of the Christmas season unfolds below.
It’s the day after thanksgiving and on the ground everything is chaotic. Life is consumed with consumption, stress, traffic, crowds, anxiety, and a general feeling of not enough. Not enough time, not enough money, not enough space, not enough security lines open at an overcrowded airport. And then there is silence.
The silence and slow drone of the engine as you climb to cruising altitude high above the world below. Everything seems to slow down and become a calm and beautiful place, with opportunity, mystery and excitement every time you look out the window. It’s the same world. Nothing has changed except my perspective.
I think this is why I have always loved flying and traveling and maybe even the very same reason other people love it as well although they just don’t know it yet. Why? because flying forces us to change our perspective. Our actual view of the world changes when we fly. We are looking down instead of out now. Then later when we arrive in this new place, which is just that, new and it forces us to re-examine and question what we thought was our permanent reality, our normal lives. This is a very, very good thing and I think you should seek to change your perspective often, but you don’t need a plane or an airport to do it… more on that later.
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For me, the last few years I have basically been involved in eCommerce and the sale of products online. So, for me, it’s always about driving enough eyeballs to an offer until a percentage of those people buy. The trap that is easy to fall into is there are just not enough people interested, there are not enough buyers…etc and sometimes I have felt that way. Maybe you have experienced something similar in your job or career.
Then I get on a plane and I find that most everywhere I go, I often cross or land in large cities as most of us do when we travel. For me, it is at these times that my perspective on my career and the opportunity around me changes.
From the plane you can really see the massive urban sprawl below and see all of the different houses, each containing 2-5 people spread out as far as the eye can see and knowing that it’s only a small infinite decimal fraction of a corner of this huge city, which is in the corner of a massive state that is in one small area of an even larger country that is part of an even larger continent that makes up not even 1/100th of the total world’s population. It is then I see the real opportunity and the real picture, because I was able to change my small myopic view of the world to that with more perspective and context and in turn it changes how I view everything around me… at least for awhile.
It’s true, over time we fall back to autopilot and our awareness of the world around us begins to shrink again. There is no more amazement with life or the amazing things taking place all around us, it’s just life, and this is exactly when you need a change of perspective: Go climb a mountain and look down, watch a sunset from a new location, go outside and look up at the stars at night, stand on your head, lay in a hammock, watch the clouds move across the sky, rent a boat, go for a swim, hop a plane or do whatever you have to do to change your perspective on the world.
One last example. As of now, I live in San Diego when I am in the states and surf often. One of my favorite parts about surfing is being able to look back at the coastline that I reside on during the day. It looks completely different. I spend 23 hours a day there, but somehow in that hour of surfing, from that perspective, it looks… well, better and more hopeful, more beautiful and more full of opportunity.
This truly exemplifies what the Buddhists call “nothingness.” Without going off on a complete tangent, the concept is that nothing in this world has meaning until we give it meaning. That is why two people can view the same event in two completely different ways and changing your perspective can often show you the “nothingness” of life. The way that you are creating the life around you by your thoughts about it.
Wayner Dyer published one of my favorite books on the Tao Te Ching and called it “Change Your Thoughts, Change Your Life” with the general premise being that when you change the way you look at the world, the world you look at changes.
Try this on for size today.
Find a way to change your perspective on things, be it physically like described above or mentally in regards to a specific issue or thought that has been present in your life. Start to question what you think is the ultimate reality of the situation by offering new ideas, thoughts and perspective and see if you can’t try to see your life through a different set of eyes. Ultimately the goal is to realize that you have the ability to control how you view the world and this realization can open a lot of doors in life and in business, not to mention make you an amazingly flexible entrepreneur, business partner and copy writer (think empathy).
PS- Use this change of perspective technique any time you need to leverage your creativity in something such as goal setting or writing. Freeing ourselves from the confines of our daily lives and expanding our perspective allows us to think, plan and strive for more than we can currently see day to day.