I’ve been fortunate to be around a lot of positive people in my life. People who can see the good in even the most challenging of circumstances.
Yesterday, my wife was with a legally blind young adult. Despite being born blind, Elizabeth radiates joy and truly is one of the nicest young people I have ever met. Her blindness hasn’t stopped her from enjoying a full life including snow skiing, waterskiing, bowling, playing basketball, running track, and deadlifting. She has even won competitions for her athletic prowess. Elizabeth also plays the piano and the tuba! She cooks, does laundry, and performs other housekeeping duties.
Even though she is blind, Elizabeth has amazing vision.
In thinking about Elizabeth, I was reminded of someone else I know who helps others see. He’s an eye doctor who improves the vision of his patients. But he also helps others with their internal vision because of his amazing positivity.
Several years ago, I had an appointment with Dr. Khaled shortly after my family and I had been camping. During my eye exam, we talked about our trip. He told me he had never been camping but because of my enthusiasm for the outdoors, he decided to plan a family camping outing. We discussed how camping created family bonding. I gave him some suggested locations nearby and shared some equipment to help make the experience more comfortable.
I left his office and didn’t think anything more about our conversation.
Until the next time I saw him.
During his first camping trip, a gas camp stove exploded and left his face severely scarred. I felt horrible. Yet he had no ill-will or resentment toward me and was even joking about his misfortune.
Later, I learned that someone started a fire at his home because of his ethnicity. His home was destroyed. Again, there was no resentment or anger expressed when he shared this story.
A few years later, his wife died due to complications from the fire. Unbelievably, he didn’t fall into despair.
It is easy to be positive when things always go your way or when life is good. However, sometimes the smallest challenges can throw some people into a tailspin.
Imagine losing your eyesight or going through what Dr. Khaled has experienced. We can let misfortune destroy our outlook or we can be like Elizabeth and Dr. Khaled who exemplify positive vision.
Try adopting this mantra:
If you look for the good in everything, in everything you’ll find the good.
Even if that may not be universally true, adopting that mindset can help bring out the positive in negative circumstances.
Try bringing this mindset to your job.
Do you have a difficult employee or customer? See them through a new lens by adopting a viewpoint that everyonehas redeeming qualities.
Is your team not working well together? Ask them to see and highlight their unique skills and individual strengths that complement each other.
Being able to see is such a wonderful gift. Having a positive vision and outlook may even be better.