Wednesday, 9 May 2012

It's all a question of perspective

I was mowing the lawn yesterday - not my favourite job, but no-one else seems to notice if the grass reaches your knees, so it falls to me. I was thinking back to a week where two people saw our garden and had completely different reactions to it. One had never seen it before, and her focus was on all the things that still need doing - the places at the edges where the grass is that little bit too long to simply mow so needs a bit more work. The other had seen it before and commented on how good it was looking and how well we were doing with it. (I have dug out several large vegetable beds and tamed borders that were three feet deep with waist high grass and weeds.)

The same snapshot of the garden and two opposite reactions.

I figured it was a question of perspective. The one knew the history of the garden and could see how far we have come. The other only saw how far there was still to go. One sees the work that has already been done, the other what is left still to do.

How often do we react to people, or judge them even, on where they are now without ever knowing how far they have come? Yes, we need to keep going, but we also need to celebrate the small victories along the way. We need both sorts of people in our lives - those who cheer us for the journey so far, and those who spur us on to greater things.

Next time you find yourself picking up on the negative in someone, remember that they might already have come a great distance.

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