And there is little you can do about it.
How does your mind react to a mention of change?
I’m told “indifference” by those who hear it described as a relentless constant in life. To others, fear slowly builds in the core of their being, bringing sweaty brows, faster heart beats, and a cotton-filled mouth.
Still, no human reaction influences the marching time and unfolding spectacles happening moment by moment in a world tormented with uncertainty.
Nature provides a strong argument for viewing change if we pay attention and I can show it with a unique story about a photograph, followed by a question worth consideration if you allow yourself the challenge.
The picture discussed is one I took for this article early last year, although at the time I didn’t know I’d write about it.
Outside my hotel room, a bitter cold descended while I slept and I woke to my world covered with ice and a layer of fresh snow.
The visuals from my window alone were stunning.
The temperature, however, removed any desire to spend time outside wandering around. I’m a beach and warm weather person. Cold is not my chosen climate for comfort.
Still, I had a choice.
There wasn’t a pressing need for me to leave early. I could stay inside and complain about the weather, stay warm and wallow in self pity as some fellow travelers did to pass time.
Maybe sit with warm coffee and listen to rambling wishes of things we wanted to do but couldn’t because of the cold.
We could validate each other and our dislike of all things cold and miserable.
Tie ourselves with shared comfort in suffering and disdain as a commonality; our grouped distress allowing a pleasured superiority to those unfortunate souls who in their wretched confusion somehow find the cold weather appealing.
Those poor misguided individuals.
I could venture into a world out of my comfort zone and search anew for something I found worthwhile.
Perhaps crack the door to my resolute beliefs, opening myself to understand the perspective of cold-loving fools who beckoned me to peer through their eyes and challenge my convictions.
Photographers who are worth their salt understand that comfort never brings life-changing pictures.
So I left the warm and safe company of strangers and let an angry, biting cold slap a new color of red across my cheeks.
The picture accompanying this article and many more I took that day became my memory of an adventure that while cold, was one I will never forget.
My decision to move from comfort and change my perspective was positive in many ways. But what happened a few months later proved more interesting.
I passed by this same spot.
Warm summer air now painted a pink hue across my cheeks. Trees holding green leaves surrounded a lake of calm dusky water.
My comfort zone returned.
The view, however, lacked the photogenic qualities I so admired from my previous visit.
I realized the obvious; I can’t influence seasonal change with my likes or dislikes, my opinions or desires. My location is the sole determinant of the changes surrounding me.
And not just seasons. Our world will continue to change and we choose how to interact with it: Technology, Politics, Business, People.
Do we sit in the same spot, always maintaining the same perspective, or do we consider alternatives; perhaps taking a risk and change our perspective?
When we refuse to open our mind, we give up vast opportunities in the bliss of our own ignorance.
The choice is not to compromise our values or weaken our integrity. The change of perspective is more a demonstration we are strong enough to understand the true meaning of empathy.
We value each other enough to desire understanding how a different viewpoint can carry with it such a strong and passionate opposition to our own.
It is important to remember that we can’t change our vision in hindsight any more than regrets can update our past.
The responsibility of understanding concepts of measured time requires us to choose in advance how we might want to enjoy the privilege of looking backward at how we treated each other, how we embraced difference, and how we accepted change.
Experience or regrets. We need to choose our present perspectives wisely because life doesn’t allow us the pleasure of trying again.