In our culture of Instagram and hashtags, people are always posting pictures with #nofilter. The person posting the picture is promoting the fact that the picture hasn’t been edited. There is no lightened effect or any coloring added to the photo. The photo is authentic. It’s completely real and I’ll be honest, when I see that hashtag, I’m frequently in awe of the picture because it is so rare to see unedited photos anymore.
I heard Pastor Andy Stanley preach with the theme #nofilter. He said things and put things on the screen that you wouldn’t expect to hear in a church sermon. He was putting it all out there. But that kind of authenticity reaches people! Andy has a reputation for preaching good wisdom for Christians, but common sense for anyone listening who is not a Christian.
What would life be like if we all lived with no filter? I don’t mean where we said and did every single thing that came to mind. I mean, what if everyone around you was truly living authentically, being comfortable in their own skin and being REAL with themselves and others? I believe there would be less fear and doubt. There would be greater vulnerability with one another, which would build intimacy.
When I attended The Journey Training‘s first class, Threshold, people were unfiltered right out of the gate. It even surprised the team how fast our group got authentic with a group of perfect strangers! That unfiltered authenticity built special relationships. It fostered an environment in which I was comfortable removing filters even I had.
Maybe we won’t be seen in the best light. Maybe we will show our flaws. Maybe others will see we aren’t perfect. They’ll see the real deal. They will see us. #nofilter.
The difference between good and bad are morals.
The difference between light and darkness are lumens.
The difference between black and white is reflection.
The difference between care and abuse is nurturing.
The difference between certainty and confusion is knowledge.
The difference between love and hate is acceptance.
The difference between the truth and a lie is honesty.
The difference between trust and doubt is a choice.
The difference between commitment and rejection is honor.
The difference between helping and hurting is contribution.
The difference between love and hate is compassion.
The difference between beauty and ugliness is perspective.
The difference between a promise and a breach is commitment.
The difference between being happy and being right is pride.
The difference between thriving and want is abundance.
The difference between courage and fear is boldness.
The difference between power and victim mentality is responsibility.
The difference between giving and taking is contribution.
The difference between success and failure is focus.
The difference between reality and acting is authenticity.
The difference between forgiveness and unforgiveness is grace.
Very little separates one thing from another, but the difference between all of them are you and me.
I don’t think there is a more polarizing vegetable. At the mention of them the reactions are generally one of “Yuck!” Some people say just the name leaves a bad taste in their mouth. I, however, am one of the ones in the other camp; I happen to love them.
I didn’t grow up eating Brussel sprouts; in fact, I didn’t even try them until I was in my twenties. I think that made the difference. Those who were forced to eat them before their palate was ready have rejected those poor little miniature cabbages for all eternity.
How often do we do the same thing with certain habits?
Experience changes things
Say you tried dieting before you were fully ready to commit. You wouldn’t have much success, right? Perhaps you thought to yourself, “I hate dieting! This isn’t for me,” and you just gave up and never tried to diet again because of that early failure.
Allow your palate to mature and give it a second (or third or fourth…) try. As we grow and change throughout our lives, we are more able to see connections that we couldn’t before. Our experiences in different parts of life are able to shape our thoughts and decisions in the rest of our life.
Take money for example. As an impulsive young woman, I had to have a tight grip on my finances. I had to know exactly what my bank balance was and what my upcoming bills were before I would allow myself to go to the mall.
I thought constantly about how much was ok to spend and where the line in the sand would be on my spending limit, whether it was for a new clothes or groceries. I couldn’t simply enjoy going out with friends, I obsessed over what I would allow myself to spend on dinner. I stopped eating out altogether at one point, choosing to eat at home and meet up with everyone else later. All of that worrying was what I thought budgeting was.
I told myself that worrying was the only way of being smart with money. In effect, I let my money control me. I hated it! When my husband and I first got engaged, I happily gave him pretty much total control of the money and budgeting. I gave away my power with it and for years, I would avoid any conversation that was centered around money.
Fear breeds avoidance
Being afraid of money isn’t healthy. I just wasn’t mature enough to learn how to budget properly and find a way that made me comfortable. This is still something that I struggle with, due to some deeper issues, but I’m slowly (very slowly!) finding ways to make my budget work for me and not the other way around.
Face your brussel sprouts!
Maybe you have been avoiding brussel sprouts for too long. Try them in a different way. Try them roasted instead of boiled. Or sautéed up with bacon and cranberries. Instead of counting calories and being afraid of food, find a different diet that works with how you are NOW. Instead of being afraid of money, find a budget plan that works with your lifestyle (and personality). Instead of forcing yourself to date the way everyone else does, find something that works for you.
So the next time you hear your friends talk about Brussel sprouts, don’t just shudder and say “Yuck!” Think about how you can see them in a different light.
Christina is a graduate of The Journey Training. The Journey Training is an experiential training that can help you see different perspectives, conquer your fears, and find different directions to success. Perhaps you’ve been struggling with something even though the answer has been right there in front of you. Maybe you just need to pause, take a breath, and step sideways so as to see things from a different perspective. The Journey Training can help you do that! Sign up for the next Threshold class today!
At the beginning of the year, someone asked me a question – a question that seemed unnatural to me. “What do you want?”
“What do I want?”
I was thrown off guard because I naturally think in terms of how I can make someone else’s life better, easier, or less worrisome. When the question was aimed at me, I didn’t know what to say. After much consideration I finally declared what I wanted, “No pain!” That seemed like an easy answer because I was in my fifth month dealing with shoulder pain. Major pain! I was four weeks out from a surgery that was more involved than first thought and the surgery came after an intense four months of physical therapy.
My answer was meant to appease the person asking it because it was obvious that I was in a lot of physical pain. Yet my answer avoided the real source of my pain – emotional pain. A betrayal that had caused me so much pain that I chose to go numb rather than to feel it. If I felt it I’d have to deal with it, and I didn’t want to deal with it because it was going to take work – a lot of work.
Finding your way requires direction
Life is a journey, and the first step in a journey is to know your destination. My destination was “No Pain,” which may be unrealistic for many reasons I won’t go into here. So I changed it to a journey of healing, with the final destination of health.
Once you know your destination you can begin on the path to it. When there is pain blocking your path, you tend not to head that way. This was the difficulty in my case. Pain was blocking my path, preventing me from arriving at my destination. But in order for me to be free from the pain, I needed to face the pain and deal with it.
Flats require attention
Facing and dealing with the pain in my journey was going to be like driving a hundred miles, getting a flat tire along the way, and continuing to drive on the flat trying to get there. It only causes more damage and could make the car inoperable.
If I pull over but don’t change the flat, I’ll remain stuck and never reach my destination. If I pull out all of the tools needed to change the flat, but if I don’t use the tools, I sit still on the side of the road, watching everyone else getting closer to their destinations.
Fix-a-flat and get moving!
Sometimes fixing a situation in your life requires an extra hand – someone to come alongside you who has the tools and ability to help you. That is what The Journey Training did for me. It connected me with people who have the tools I need, so as I am on my way, I can fix the “flats” along the way. It is an empowering, freeing and self-strengthening opportunity that I recommend for anyone to attend. If you’re too afraid to begin, or you’ve begun and have a flat, reach out the The Journey Training and get the tools you need to help you along your way today! Your destination awaits!
Often in life we are too busy to take a moment and look at things from a different perspective, whether that perspective is ours, or perhaps someone else’s point of view. Harvey Mackay said “When you wake up every day, you have two choices. You can either be positive or negative; an optimist or a pessimist. I choose to be an optimist. It’s all a matter of perspective.” The perspective you select is a choice. Yet far too often we allow ourselves to be the victim of our unwillingness to step back, move, and look at things from a different point of view.
Pictures of Perspective
That’s one of the things I love about photography… looking at something differently. You see, photography allows me to get a new perspective on something I may have seen so many times one way that I’ve become blind to it. In the movie “Dead Poets Society”, English teacher John Keating (played by Robin Williams) inspires his students to stand on a desk in order to see the world from a new perspective. “I stand upon my desk to remind myself that we must constantly look at things in a different way.”
Close to my home is a water detention pond. It was built to hold water in the event of a flooding rain. On nice days, I take walks in the field to clear my head – and I never forget my camera! Most who pass by only see a field of emptiness. However, because I am willing to slow down and change my perspective – even lie down on the ground – I am able to see new things that many will never get to see. There are times when my neighbors or passersby must think I’m crazy – crazy because I am out lying on the ground, squatting at a funny angle, or zooming in close on something they can’t see. I’m doing all of this not because I am seeing something they can’t see, but rather I am taking the time to see what they are missing, or perhaps what they won’t see. I am being intentional about viewing something from a different perspective, and in effect I am seeing things those who don’t choose to see will miss.
Practice your perspectives
Practice seeing new perspectives. Make a choice within the next 24 hours to look at something in a new or different way. It may be a place or thing, or it may even be a situation. Let me suggest a few ways you can change your perspective:
- Stand on a desk or ladder…
- Slow down…
- Change your position… Sit in a different place, or in someone else’s chair or position…
- Walk on the opposite side of the street…
- Take a different route home…
- Ask yourself how someone else might see or feel in a given situation…
- If you have a persistent problem that you have been stuck in, ask yourself how you might be able to look at it from a new point of view…and then choose do it.
Changing perspectives changes things
Perspective is a way you can change anything! After all, if you want to see something change, maybe you simply need to change how you see something.
In The Journey Training , many people come in blind to so many things in their lives – because what you do every day becomes your normal, right? Month after month we see eyes opened to a new way of seeing thing, and in effect lives are changed. We’ve seen businesses revived, marriages healed, weight-loss, increased income, and so many other results of those who have chosen to take a weekend and change their perspective. Think about it, you don’t know what you don’t know until you see it. Why not take a weekend and see those things that may be holding you back from getting all you want in life! Why not begin your Journey Training in the very next Threshold class?