#16: Changing Your Point of View

The dog is my running buddy. I love to run on the trail above, but he doesn’t. He gets skittish and wary of anyone we pass. As we run, he glances over his shoulder, repeatedly, no matter how many times I redirect him. This annoys me.

I want to enjoy a simple slice of nature without wrangling the dog.

Here’s what the trail looks like from his point of view:

It’s a much scarier place. After I shot the photo, I wanted to give him a hug. I finally felt I understood his paranoia … a little. I won’t give up training him to run like a good boy, but I won’t feel annoyed anymore.

That’s the beauty of changing your point of view.

Nothing’s beautiful from every point of view. -Horace

  • Exercise: Simple enough – today is the day to look at something from another point of view. Something that frustrates or annoys you. You don’t have to change your mind. Simply see what the issue looks like from another perspective.

Simply Beautiful Things is where I share moments of wonder from the world around me. The photos are my own. You can check out the archives here.

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1 Clara November 3, 2011 at 10:06 am

Lovely – and such a good reminder to look at something from someone else’s perspective. Thanks for sharing!

2 Melissa November 7, 2011 at 9:18 am

Your welcome, Clara! Thank you for stopping by and taking the time to comment. 🙂

3 Kel November 3, 2011 at 10:28 am

A good reminder.
I just finished Cesar’s Way by the Dog Wisperer. 🙂 I LOVED it and it’s great advice for helping with this exact thing, walking and running with dogs that get nervous. 🙂
I got more out of it for myself than the for my dog. lol

4 Melissa November 7, 2011 at 9:17 am

Hi Kel,
I should read that book! I’ll bet it’s very entertaining. What kind of dog do you have?
Have a great week,

5 Jessica November 3, 2011 at 12:32 pm

Great post, I wish more people would do this in other aspects of their life. I do this daily and it definately helps, especially when raising children.

6 Melissa November 7, 2011 at 9:17 am

Your kids are lucky to have a mom that does this for them! It’s something I’m working on.
Cheers to a peaceful week!

7 Kerstin November 3, 2011 at 2:55 pm

Love this. It is something I do naturally, all the time, it’s like I can’t help myself. Weighing up all sides, looking at all perspectives, putting on the other shoe. I can drive myself, and others, crazy with this, because it also means that I have a harder time making decisions and end up sitting on the fence a lot. This also reminds me of one of my favorite quotes by Paul Coelho: “It is one thing to think that you are on the right path, it is another to think that yours is the only path.”

8 Melissa November 7, 2011 at 9:15 am

Hi Kerstin,
Thank you for sharing that quote! I love it. I’m going to post that for my readers today.

9 Mike November 4, 2011 at 11:30 am

I like this post.
Cool dog!

10 Melissa November 7, 2011 at 9:12 am

🙂 He is a cool dog. I was never a dog person until we brought him into the family.

11 Marci | Liberating Choices November 4, 2011 at 3:19 pm

Wow, these two photos do carry a much different feeling. It reminds me of slowing down instead of jumping to conclusions with my kids. Listening first consequence, if necessary, second.

12 Melissa November 7, 2011 at 9:12 am

Hi Marci,
It really does help to put yourself in a child’s shoes. It helps me understand how they feel, so even if they still have a consequence, I try to let them know I can see why they feel that way.
Take care!

13 Nicole November 5, 2011 at 8:33 am

What a sweet person you are Melissa! Good for you for thinking so laterally. The bushes on either side of the trail look so much denser from the dog viewpoint don’t they?

14 Melissa November 7, 2011 at 9:10 am

They really do! I never realized it until I took that photo. Thanks for stopping by and have a lovely week. 🙂

15 Lisa ahn November 5, 2011 at 8:46 am

Melissa, you have an uncanny and wonderful ability to isolate the lesson I need when I need it. I am NOT good at this shift in perspective at all. I think I am usually in too much of a rush (patience is also not my strong point.) I love this reminder. We have a 5 month old puppy who is skittish about nearly everything. It took me awhile to figure out that he was scared of puddles because of the reflection of the sunlight on the ground. I usually don’t remember to look from his perspective. And I forget to do so with my kids as well. Thank you for the reminder.

16 Melissa November 7, 2011 at 9:09 am

Hi Lisa,
I definitely will work on a applying that mindset to my kids more, too! Its so easy to forget they don’t think the same way as me. They don’t have 30 years of experience yet.

I totally got an adorable visual of a puppy that’s afraid of puddles. That would be a cute picture book!
Have a great week,

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