A few weekends ago I spent some time designing my new loft to make it more conducive to the creative space that I need to be in to write. I believe that our physical environment has a direct effect not only on our creativity but also on our mood and productivity. Many people agree with this belief but everyone has a very different perception of what this looks like.
As a part of my design process, I treated myself to my first, very own, top of the line bed complete with 1000 thread count Egyptian cotton sheets. This may seem like no big deal, but for me it was a major milestone. This was my first time purchasing my very own bed that was not a hand me down or some other complicated situation. What does that say about me? For years, I put many of my basic needs on the back burner while trying to cater to the needs of others and ultimately save the world. Well, even super heroes need somewhere comfortable to lay their head at night. The mini moral here is that we won’t be of much good to anyone else, if we are not first good to ourselves.
The movers came and one of them felt compelled to tell me, before he even saw my loft, that he doesn’t think this is a good place to live. He based it upon several reasons, one being that I live across from a Salvation Army residential facility. He went on to support his point by saying that when he walks out of his door, he wants to see something beautiful. He said that when I walk out my door I see killers and criminals.
I defended my space by saying, well what about the view of the river? He said, “Oh, that’s not a real view, that building is in the way, and there’s an abandoned lot…”
The funny thing is, no matter how much supporting evidence he provided to support his claim, never once did he change my lens or my frame.
If things aren’t looking so good in your life, perhaps it’s time to change the lens through which you view them. If that doesn’t work, then change the frame. The lens is your vision or perception. The frame is your mindset. Your situation can improve as quickly as you can change your mind and your outlook.
Here is how I view my situation. First of all I live in Detroit, Michigan. A city that I admire for its resilience. A city that I love. A city that I won’t give up on just for the simple fact that so many others already have or want to. Second of all, my vision reaches so high and so far that I see beyond the busy street, beyond the vacant lots, straight to the river that is framed by the sky. I look at it as a beautiful glimpse of God’s great creation. Only one piece in His vast collection of living art work. And finally, I don’t look at the men that reside at the Salvation Army as criminals or killers. I look at them as men with enough courage to take the first step to seek help. Men who are starting the beginning of the rest of their lives. Men who are on the cusp of a breakthrough who will go on to share their testimony to touch the lives of others in need.
Perhaps I view the world through rose colored glasses, but my outlook is what motivates me to inspire and encourage others. My positive mindset is what has freed me from the trappings of mental health issues that plague our community, especially in economic times such as this.
So my friends, perhaps it’s time for a new prescription. New lenses, new frames and thus a beautiful start to a new life free from so much heartache and pain.