Whilst Einstein's theory of relativity may have something to say on this blog, after listening to In Our Time last night on radio 4 on the subject, I'm none the wiser. Other than to say perspective is relative to what you know, where you're standing and when you're doing it.
There's many different ways of getting perspective on a situation. There's also different ways of reminding ourselves of what happens when we don't have sufficient perspective.
The above clip from Father Ted uses humour to make the point. Landscaping Your Success uses metaphor. Either way, they're both a great reminder that we can only make sense of what we're seeing when it's in relation to everything that is around it, and when it's in relation to things that are known.
For example, the answer to how far away is the rock in the picture from my house in Burntisland and, therefore, how long will it take me to walk there and how long will I have to do that safely, are very difficult to determine from this picture from the window at home. There's another picture of the rock from the beach in my blog from earlier in the week.
You might be able to establish some of the answers when there are people, or horses as in this photo, standing next to it when the tide is out - as it's only then I realise it's bigger than it looks.
Perspective also comes from being able to see the rock in context, as shown from the top of the hill at the back of Burntisland in this picture (as mentioned in yesterday's blog when we walked up it to get perspective on a situation using the Landscaping Your Success process):
Or from different angles and at different times of the tide.
Or, following yesterday's blog, perhaps using maps is the only way to get a better understanding - at least that provides an accurate scale.
It's only after all this information is known and compared and analysed that the answer to "how far away is the rock?" is: further away, bigger, taller and wider than I first thought. Only then that I can accurately determine how to deal with the situation. Which in this case involved walking there an hour before low tide as demonstrated by this video blog I recorded once I got there on having the right tools for the job.
How can you get more perspective on a challenge in your life?
The Purchasing Coach
Inspiring change inside and out by Landscaping Your Success
PS: I think perhaps those who designed this poster should perhaps read the blog too and understand what perspective would look like for 'best days out'. I know the pictures show Burntisland to be a great place but I worry for the rest of Scotland if the best day out would be had from coming here! Then that's just from my perspective - kidlets might enjoy the fair and the beach.