When we travel, even for a weekend getaway, we broaden our perspective of not only the world at large but also our place within it. By seeing new sites, meeting new people and actively diving in to new experiences, we expand our concept of reality beyond the normal and the everyday of work, home and community.
You can begin to broaden your perspective without even leaving home with this fun activity:
1.) Take piece of paper (8 1/2 by 11 is fine), roll it up and affix it together with some tape or a rubber band.
2.) Next choose a scene you want to focus on. A scene in nature is best. You can pick a tree or a pot of flowers in your backyard or you can get fancy and go to a park, the beach or the forest. You can also go to city places, like the mall.
3.) Put that rolled-up piece of paper to your eye like you are a pirate looking out at the vast sea before you (you can
even squint like a pirate just for fun if you want).
4.) Looking through the peephole of the paper, focus your eye at different things you see until one thing really piques your interest. Study this one thing intensely, noticing every detail, every shadow and every
nook and cranny. Then go on to the next thing that catches your eye through the peephole. Do this with at least 4-5 things.
5.) Next, take your eye away from the peephole and look at the whole scene before you. Take in the “whole enchilada,” so to speak. Really study it from a bird’s eye perspective, especially the things that you had noticed through the peephole. Can you see how everything in the scene before you is connected in some way to something else? For example, that individual flower that you saw through the peephole is connected to all the other flowers by a common stem.
6.) Finally take a few minutes to jot down your reflections in a journal.
Often, this is how we go through our day-to-day life: we are only looking through the peephole of our personal existence. The traveling experience helps us to have a broader perspective on our own lives. This activity can as well, before you even pack a bag.
Like traveling, this activity allows you step back and see the “bigger picture” of what is going on in your life and in your environment. Through it, just like through traveling, we can remember that there IS INDEED a bigger picture to it all, even if we can’t see it all the time.
Have fun and feel free to share your experiences in the comment section below!