Friday, September 30, 2011

On Perspective

by Kris Pitcher

A number of conversations recently have me reflecting on perspective. The funny thing about it is you only have your own, unless you look for someone else's perspective.

The first was a conversation with someone who is dealing with a parent in declining health. She was worried the parent might feel resentful of the financial and medical decisions she is having to make on their behalf. There was a "Dear Abby" sort of letter in the paper which happened to describe her exact situation.

I looked for the perspective of the parent in declining health. And I relayed that her parent is mourning the loss of the life she used to have. She knows she'll never have the autonomy, the independence, or ability to make the difficult financial and medical decisions needed in her life. Imagine that kind of change. Imagine giving up your most intimate personal care tasks and allowing someone else to help you. She's feeling a sense of loss. My message was to honor that and allow her to make choices where appropriate.

The next conversation was more in line with what I am used to. Competing. I was reminded by a fellow competitor that we need to think about other people's perspectives. It's easy to get caught up in what we do. Our world becomes VERY focused. But there is an entire world out there of people who don't begin their day weighing out fish.

Change is difficult for the people around you. As you take on a healthier lifestyle it's not uncommon for people to have a difficult time understanding and supporting your choices. For all of us who have managed weight over the years, we know it can be difficult for family and coworkers to understand our goals, choices and changes .

Think about the change from the perspective of others, not just your own. Look from the outside for considerations. Are you difficult to be around? Do you limit where you can go, and what you can do because of your pursuits? Do you constantly talk about your program, plan, diet, exercise etc? Are you putting up barriers for the people around you? Just things to consider as you work to make change yet remain "normal" in your life.

I guess it's about balance. Nobody likes someone who's too far one way on any issue or "thing"'s a little crazy. This is where I thank all my friends and family for letting me bow out of regular enjoyable things to pursue my training. It's safe to say my focus has made a difference for my goals. And that's what it takes. Thanks for allowing me a "rain check". I honestly appreciate your perspective.

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