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Change How You Feel by Changing Your Perspective

Woman Looking Out Window

“Instead of complaining that the rose bush is full of thorns, be happy the thorn bush has roses.” ~Proverb

While I was a going through what I considered the worst divorce in history, I remember waking up every day thinking throughout the day what a horrible thing divorce was. I wondered how other people had gone through it and come out with their sanity, and not marred with cynicism about love and life.

For a year, all I saw was the negative in everything, including my ex-husband, my life circumstances, and most of all myself.

My husband was fighting for me to pay him alimony, I was supporting three kids on one income, my mother had sided with ex-husband, and I found out my best friend was a heroin addict. I had bills upon bills to pay, was struggling to make ends meet, and it seemed like every check I wrote bounced.

I could not wrap my mind around why all of this was happening at one time, and I felt like giving up on most days because there was no good in the world.

Depression came and wrapped me up, and I could not break free from seeing the worst in every situation and imagining that more of the worst would happen.

Then one day I realized that, as miserable as I was and as much as I wanted my situation to change, it was not going to, at least not in the moment I wanted it to.

I realized that there was only one thing I could change, and that was my perspective and how I looked at everything.

I decided that I could look at my life in one of two ways: either I was destined to be punished eternally and live a miserable life full of pain, hurt, and guilt; or I was going through all of this because the Universe knew I was strong enough to bear it and I would come out stronger, better, and happier than if I did not go through it.

I choose the latter.

When I decided to change my perspective, I felt comforted to know that all that I was going through had a purpose, even if I did not understand it. I found a peace in knowing that I could change my mood in an instant by changing my perspective.

We all go through tough times, but how we view what we are going through is completely up to us.

Even after I realized the importance of perspective, I still had moments when I let the negative invade. When that happened, I thought of the following to shift my mind back to a place of peace.

Nothing lasts forever.

There is no emotion or situation that will last forever. Life ebbs and flows, and the good and bad in life will come and go, eternally.

This world is a dual world.

The physical world and what we see and feel is not all there is. There is a world of spirit and purpose underneath it, and no matter what it looks like on the outside, there is much more going on beneath the circumstances we perceive as negative.

If I can remember that and tap into the deeper meaning behind what I am experiencing, then I can accept what I am going through with greater ease.

We have a choice in how we view things.

Today, I look back on all that I have been through in the past year and instead of feeling angry, bitter, or consumed by it, I feel that so much has come from it.

I started a second job to help with the bills and consequently I have found my passion in teaching, something I have always had a desire to do.

I have built wonderful relationships with the friends that supported me through the tough times and I know that I can go through tough times and not break.

Somewhere along the way, I was able to find the silver lining in my rainbow, and you can too.

Take a look at your life and think of the many tough times you have endured and the many blessings that have arisen from them.

You have a chance to find the bright side to your situation, no matter how tough it seems, by only changing your view and identifying the positive of every experience. There is a lesson in the pain and there is a beautiful rose in your thorn bush.

Remember, changing your perspective is like changing the window through which you view the world. When you change how you view the world, you change how you feel about it.

Woman looking out window image via Shutterstock

About Gina Petty

Gina Petty is an insanely candid social worker and educator that believes that genuineness and laughter have the ability to infect humanity and open your spirit to the lighter side of the hard parts of life.

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  • Hi Gina
    Thank you for sharing your story and insights. It was great that during all that turmoil you had that realization of choice. What an amazing thing it is right? Not always easy but we do have that option available to us always, no matter what is happening.

    I went through a very tough time financially several years ago, but the situation ended up being a blessing because the source of income I lost was one that I was not really enjoying much anymore anyway. The situation forced me into overdrive as far as my work on my mindset and belief system went, and it ended up being a very pivotal experience in a path of positive changes in my life, and moving into the person I really was.

    I believe that everything that unfolds is there to serve us in some way in that it either reveals to us limiting beliefs that influence our experience in a negative way, or help us fine tune our desires..sometimes we don’t know what we want until we figure out what we do.

    Great post!

  • patbb

    thanks for sharing, it’s great to realize other people went through similar stuff we have to endure.
    it help to avoid concluding we are going through tough situations because we are just bad at life.

  • sowmyas

    Thank you Gina for sharing your story. I am going through a very tough time right now and I am really scared, confused and unhappy about my situation. After reading your post, I think I will try to look at my situation from a different perspective and see if that helps.

  • Noel

    Hi Gina,

    I’ve experienced first hand how changing one’s perspective can totally change the “color of the ballgame” so to speak. I was in debt and all my bills piled up one after another. Opening every new bill was causing me and my wife stress and wow, is this never gonna end? I too had a deep realization and I told myself that the situation is worse enough and if I hang on to the negative feeling, I may just explode and totally lose my sanity.

    The one thing that is important is to always have and never lose HOPE. Once you lose it, you will eventually give up and quit fighting. It’s all in the mind and if you condition your mind to see adversity on another perspective, everything should be all right.

    Thanks for sharing this Gina!

  • LaTrice Dowe

    I want to thank you, Gina, for sharing your story and insights. Life will have you in a storm, but it’s up to you to get through it, despite the options.

    My ex-boyfriend dumped me for an older white woman. Instead of being man enough to tell me in my face that the relationship was over, he took the cowardly way out, by not answering my phone calls and text messages. His actions have disgusted me so much that not only did I lost a ton of respect towards him, I HATED his guts (and still do hate him to this day). This man was very controlling, jealous, manipulative, insecure, and had way too much baggage. I use my ex-boyfriend as a primary example of what to look for in a relationship, and of course, red flags. I shouldn’t have to lower my expectations and standards, just because he fell short of ALL of them.

    I didn’t want to feel sorry for myself anymore, so I decided to change my perspective. It all started with me standing up for myself, I shouldn’t allow a man to disrespect me, due to his insecurities, and if he can’t meet me at my level, I don’t see the point on establishing a relationship with him.

    My current boyfriend has exceeded all of my expectations. He’s very supportive, positive, and wants to share his triumphs and tribulations with me. It’s nice to be with someone who doesn’t feel intimidated by the intelligence that I possess. He does see a future with me. Hopefully, there will be a wedding and babies in the future.

  • Salma Mansoor

    Gina you are a star. It greatly help in my present situation. Now I can view problems with 360° perspective. May Lord bless you with peace and harmony. And thanks.

  • Salma Mansoor

    True

  • Salma Mansoor

    Good luck LaTrice