Getting a Fresh Perspective

Happy children standing upside downIt’s been cold where I live — the sort of cold that gets into your bones (and makes them rattle, even when they’re well-padded, like mine. 😉 )

The church where I play the piano responded to the cold this week by holding the Sunday service in the basement. It’s toasty warm down there. But there were other advantages, too.

Instead of entering at the back of the room, as people do upstairs, the chairs were set so that one entered at the front. People were milling about talking to each other when I walked in. The choir was there, talking to people, instead of being back in the choir room before the service. Usually when I play the piano, my back is to the people. I was facing them this time. It was nice to be able to see their faces. The chairs were in one small, close group, so people were sitting closer to each other. The singing was better, too, in the smaller space.

Sometimes it’s good to do things a little differently, to change things up, to get a fresh perspective.

I’ve just finished a major rewrite of a novel for adults. I still have some tweaking to do, some reshuffling of what goes in which chapter, but the rewrite itself is done. (Of course, there will be more editing down the road.)

I had intended to just keep going, and do the tweaks right away, but a friend suggested I take a day or two and do something entirely different, to give my mind a break. I am going to take her advice. I’ve been working on this manuscript for a long time, and it will help — even for the minor tweaks — to get a bit of distance from it, and to come back at it with my mind refreshed and renewed.

It’s good, once in a while, to take a break from whatever we’re doing, or to do what we need to do in a different way.

Even just taking a different route to work or school, reading a different genre of book, watching a different type of movie, can change your perspective. Put yourself in someone else’s shoes for a while — think about how another person might react to a situation and see how that reaction might differ from yours.

What helps you get a fresh perspective?

5 thoughts on “Getting a Fresh Perspective”

  1. I always take a break from a finished story. Then I revise and take a break again. I think that is good advice. Can’t beat fresh eyes, even if they’re your own!

  2. I don’t know if it helps me get a fresh perspective, but I find that doing a different creative thing is a nice change of pace if I need one (so I’ll knit, draw, sew, or crochet…can’t wait to warp the loom so I can finally weave too). 🙂

  3. Strange, but true – I have a dog who is obsessed with ball throws. We’ve gone through dozens of balls. Periodically, I have to get on my hands and knees and look under the furniture to find them. But, when you are physically at a different level (i.e., a kid’s eye view), your perspective sure changes. It’s kinda fun to perceive the world this way … and then, write about it!

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