Why Be a Prisoner of Your Perspective?

By Kurt Eskilson 

It’s early July and finally feeling like summer with temperatures in the 90s. But not long ago we had a late-May cold snap when the noontime temp barely broke 50. Weirdly chilly.

Walking to my car with my salad-bar lunch, a woman parked nearby lamented how cold and nasty it seemed. Looking up, there were a few clouds but plenty of blue. And the air felt refreshing. So I said, “This would be a beautiful day in February.”

“It’s not February,” she said.

True. It wasn’t. From her May perspective, the day was not meeting expectations. It was disappointing.

I didn’t argue the point, of course. I just allowed myself to enjoy what – in its own way – was a perfectly pleasant day.

As creative professionals, it’s our daily job to push free of limiting perspectives and brainstorm new and innovative ways to see the world. It’s what we do.

But how often in our daily lives are we sad prisoners of our own perspectives? People and situations fail to meet our expectations. And that disappoints us. Sometimes painfully.

Maybe I wrote a batch of headlines and – from my perspective – my favorite one was by far the best. But that one wasn’t the winner. My least favorite got picked.

Okay. So my first reaction is that somebody doesn’t get it. In the bright and sunny days of my mature career, I expect my best work should be obvious to anyone. But not this day.

So what if I step back a moment and look at it through fresh eyes? After all, one of my headlines did get picked. And the client is very happy with it. In the wintry season of my early career – when success was not an everyday event – I would have been thrilled with such a win.

This would be a wonderful day – in February. So why not enjoy it now?

 

 

Kurt Eskilson is a C-level shareholder at jones huyett Partners. Throughout his career he has learned to do many things that help clients – and jhP – to be successful. But ever since he learned to read, writing has been his true passion. It’s always a good day when he gets to have fun helping people with words.

 

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