Wednesday, September 17, 2008



What do you see here? Do you see the profiles of two heads or a vase?

"When you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change."
Wayne Dyer

I love this quote. I had it taped to the top of my desk for years and when I retired I left it taped there for whoever sat next at that desk.

Whenever I read this quote several thoughts always come to mind. One thing I always think about is the figure at the top which depending on whether you see the black or white as figure or ground, changes what you see. In one instance you see the profiles of two heads and in the other, a vase. Try it! (You have to kind of scrunch your eyes up and look sort of sideways....) I saw this about 40 years ago and it still intrigues me.

I have learned that I also have thinking that is often distorted, shifting from one viewpoint to another, often confusing.

My perception of people and events can cause me to feel anxious, hurt, angry, or sad. My thoughts often get me in trouble and I have difficulty changing my focus on my own. I need help. I need other people. I cannot do it alone. Boy, do I hate that idea. I want to do it on my own. BUT...........................I usually can't.


Here is the question:
How do I change my perception of an event, a person, a situation?

Well....... when I need to change my perception, a call to my sponsor or another AA or Alanon friend or talking to a sponsee usually helps. Bumping up the number of meetings I'm attending is a great idea. Reaching out to another alcoholic always changes my thinking.


When I find myself in a place that is hurting or confusing me, I need to take action and shift my perceptions. The things I'm looking at will change when I change the way I'm looking at them.



Shadow said...

so sensible. and so effective. thanks for the reminder.

J-Online said...

I think that picture is so cool. It still baffles me and I always have to look hard to find the faces.

Perception is so interesting to me because it is different for everyone. Two people can have the same experience but see it very differently.

I have been trying to change the way I look at things and my life is much better because of this. Thank you for the message prayer girl. Hugs!

indistinct said...

I always see a big wine glass first. Then the faces.

Love this post. Reminds me of when I finally started to enter recovery when I realized I can't trust my own perceptions and that the people in the group I was in had a better grasp of what was going on than me. That was the first time I surrendered my will.

It's still a struggle but it's getting better, much better.


AlkySeltzer said...

How TRUE it is! Two people, two perceptions. In fact, like you mention, even ONE person's perception, after a bit of change--well--one person, two perceptions.

Good for me to keep this in mind, it might even change the way I think about some things! -grin- MAYBE?

~Tyra~ said...

I have to admit I thought it was a wine glass but then I could see the two faces as well.

Great post.

Gabriella Moonlight said...

I ask god for help all the time!!!! I pray, talk to my sponsor, talk to a friend, and just turn my mind off of me and on to someone I can help as much as I can. Thank you for this beautiful post!

Akannie said...

HIya, PG...

Just found your blog, courtesy of...someone else's blog! (love how this works!!)

I always think about perceptions in terms of a crystal hanging in the window. The sun hits it, and the rainbows it throws around the room are breathtaking. Touch it and nudge it just a bit, and the lightshow changes ! My perceptions are just like that. If I can step back and take a breath, I often see thing in a completely different light. Talking to my Creator always helps too.
Someone once told me in early sobriety that they tried to see another person through God's eyes. I always like that too...taking a higher view of things...

Anonymous said...

This is very good.

I used to be a big Dyer-head. He's great.