“To change ourselves effectively, we first had to change our perceptions.”
–Stephen R. Corvey, Author of 7 Habits of Highly Effective People
Can’t see the forest for the trees? Having trouble seeing another person’s point of view? Perspective is the strength you need. This strength represents the capacity to recognize and understand multiple sides before giving advice. People with this strength are usually sought out for counsel or alternative points of view as they learn from both the strengths and mistakes of those around them.
In a 2012 study, perspective was one of five strengths found to be highly related to performance on creative tasks and negatively related to stress. The ability to see the bigger picture, and put yourself in the shoes of another person, also led to higher levels of empathy. In Michelle McQuaid’s book, Can You Put Your Strengths To Work, perspective is described as your capacity to view situations in a way that resonates meaningfully for both yourself and the people you share your views with.
Need some inspiration? Check out these stories of perspective!
- Daryl Davis, an African American blues musician, has made 200 KKK members see things differently and give up their robes.
- Scientists are consistently evolving their thoughts based on new evidence and the discovery of new facts.
DID YOU KNOW…
“Perspective, or the ability to think in terms of big issues such as death and one’s role in the world, is more robustly linked to the well-being of older people than conditions such as physical health, socioeconomic status, financial situation, and physical and social environments?”-VIA Institute on Character
PUT IT IN PRACTICE
- Ask Yourself Three Questions. When you start focusing on the negative, your mind can get caught in a spiral of racing thoughts and anxieties. Asking these three questions can help you realize your worst fears almost never happen and there’s almost always another option to your situation.
- What is the worst possible outcome?
- What is the best possible outcome?
- What is most likely going to happen?
- Reach Out to Another Person. Whether it’s a challenging relationship with a colleague or a presentation you’re not sure about, sometimes a fresh set of eyes is exactly what we need. This week, ask a person you trust to help you see a situation from another angle.