It's All in How You Look at Things

Old woman or young girl?
You know how sometimes the same information keeps coming at you from all sides? The classic illusion puzzle illustrated above has taken over my life lately. It began as I wrote in my journal yesterday morning and realized that I could look at a situation from 180ยบ around for a point of view my  more to my liking, then I could clearly see both points of view. "It's all in how I look at things," I wrote.

That reminded me of another favorite illusion, and rather than finding it elsewhere, I made my own. Notice how the bars and word look shaded? Click the image for proof they're not. 
Click and wait 4 seconds for alternate view
Within the next twenty-four hours, I noticed references to this sort of reframing several places. Unfortunately, the notes I made on the sources were mental, and like most great story ideas that aren’t written down, they vanished. (Note to self: write things down!) One was in a book I read. Another was in a blog, and the third in an email newsletter. I even found a link to a webpage with some amazing illusions, and video explanations. You can explore it on your own.

The relevance for us is that things are not always as they seem, and in many ways, everything we see is an illusion. We can often choose how to view it, and these choices can lead to inner peace and healed relationships. That isn’t always easy, and sometimes assistance like you’ll find on the Yoism website is the only way you’ll be able to make the shift.

Here are a few tips to use while you write in your journal or ponder a knotty question in a story. Look at a specific aspect of a situation and ask:
  • “Is this true?”
  • “How else could I explain things?”
  • “What is the hidden gift here?”
  • “How might (the other person) see this situation?”
  • “What can I learn from this?”
In each case, write your answers down. Don’t be disappointed if you don’t experience an immediate shift in outlook or attitude. You may need more data or practice at alternate view and explanations. Whatever the case, you’ll get some great mind exercise and keep your mental muscles limber and lithe. You may find this exercise is a lot of fun, and even humorous. It may yield a story idea or few. You may feel more creative as a result. You may even become a more forgiving, grateful and accepting person.

Write now:
if you’ve ever had a dramatic reversal of attitude write a story or essay about that event. If you haven’t think of a puzzling situation and use freewriting or your journal to practice looking at it from different angles, using one or more of the questions on the list above.

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