Are you a practicing opportunist? Someone who looks at life through the lens of what opportunity is being presented in any given situation, no matter how negative it may seem in the moment? If so, you have come to the realization that careful observation is what opens the doorway to perceiving opportunity, even when the landscape seems bleak.
For the sake of possibly deeper understanding of seeing what we can observe or understand, the Merriam Webster dictionary defines “Observation” as “the act of careful watching and listening; the activity of paying close attention to someone or something in order to get information.”
This is exactly the key, observing in order to get and gather information. This is what will help us on our journey to understand those observations have an impact on us and our ability to break through, away, and gain a truer sense of our own direction, our own self authenticity, our own way of being.
Contemplating observation beyond what is right in front of us presents an opportunity for you to exercise your real life, true knowing, deep in your heart that there is, indeed, more to life than meets the eye. Even in the most mundane-seeming professional situations, there are opportunities for personal growth if we are willing to see them as such.
For example, if you find yourself in the uncomfortable situation where you have been told that you are being let go, released from your contract, downsized or laid off, there are many ways you may respond to that information. The key word here is ‘respond’ rather than ‘react’. Here is the first opportunity.
Reaction usually involves invoking emotions like anger, shame and/or guilt, either self-directed or aimed at others. These emotions are often overpowering and may be paralyzing. Response certainly includes emotions as well- perhaps disbelief, sadness, hurt, or confusion.
When we react, we don’t take the time to observe clearly and consider consciously how we want to proceed. We let our raw emotions make all of the decisions. In a response mode, we can feel our feelings, observe that we feel them, and then move on to shift our perspective into seeking the opportunities beckoning to us beyond the loss. We can observe and accept what information was offered to us as a result of the end of this professional chapter and we can incorporate that information as appropriate into our lives. After that time for self-assessment, we can relish in the opportunity to open ourselves up to imagining what new professional scenarios we want to seek in our life.
Approaching life challenges as opportunities in our personal and professional worlds can take practice. When we shift our perceptions in that way, we open ourselves up to being responsible for what we bring into our lives. Through observation, we can learn from every experience and look deeply to see the opportunities emerging from the rubble of what has gone before. We cease being a victim of circumstance and instead become an observant opportunist, seeing prospects instead of defeats at the turn of events in our lives. We recognize that there really is a choice in everything and that if we take the time to calm our emotions and be fully present to what is happening, our observations can present wonderful new opportunities.