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Pointing our lens toward more joy

Updated: Nov 29, 2023

Isn’t it great that these days the majority of us can take a photo whenever and wherever we want to. We can point our smart phone at the scene we want to capture, or at ourselves, and bingo, a memory is captured; a moment in time is frozen to remember or share.

We can point and shoot to create some potential great photos, and then we can play with filters or features to bring out the best of that image.

Just like smart phones, each of us has our own inbuilt lens and filters which are working all the time, filtering information in and out, helping us to enhance or potentially detract from the joy we our experiencing in our daily life experience although often we don't realise this.

Where we choose to direct our focus, from moment to moment, directly drives the experience of our lives, either toward what we desire, or away from it.

When we learn to fully appreciate that we are in charge of where we are directing our focus, and we apply this concept in our life, it is a complete game changer. At any time, we can direct our focus to what will serve, support or positively challenge us, and while there is responsibility and accountability in that, there is also empowerment, which gives us more feelings of control over our own lives.

Another way of considering this is to imagine our focus like the shining beam of a torch on a dark night. When you shine a torch in the dark, all you can see is what the torch beam is illuminating. Everything else is excluded from your vision, although it is still there.

Like shining a beam of light, we choose the direction of our focus, every single day, every single moment, and there are so many choices when it comes to what we can focus on.

Think about your day so far today. Where has your focus been? Did you have a good sleep and wake up feeling energetic, excited about what the day might bring, or did you wake up focusing on how you might not have had the best sleep. Or you could have felt the start of a headache and perhaps began thinking, how am I going to function well today feeling like this? By the time this afternoon comes I’m going to be exhausted. And then maybe you spilled your cup of tea. Here we go, you think.

According to leading international coach Tony Robbins, 'where focus goes, energy flows'. He says we are making 3 decisions all the time, all starting with our focus.

Moment to moment, we are deciding:

1. What we will focus on;

2. What that means, and

3. What we will do

So moving back to the above scenario, what if you woke up, and it crossed your mind that you didn’t have the best sleep, and then you decided to focus on how you did get 4-5 hours, and when that’s happened in the past you’ve been able to get through the day and that maybe a coffee or a walk will help, and that you are really grateful because your bed is so comfy, and you might be able to get an early night tonight. And if you spilled your cup of tea, you start laughing.

Completely different focus, and a completely different meaning. And you can imagine how your actions will follow that direction of focus.

Sometimes it's easy to forget that we are pointing our own lens and we are in charge of the direction of our focus. And especially when really challenging things happen, you're not going to just click your fingers and have a magical day.

When we are really challenged it's natural and essential for us to sit with our emotions and allow them and work our way forward when we're ready. In these times it can be a good idea to seek support and reach out.

The thing to remember is that as we build self-awareness and we start to notice when we're focusing on what's not working for us in daily life, we can decide when we are ready we to change focus.

In our PLS educational programs we call it changing channels, and children especially love this concept and can grasp it so well.

There are loads of ways to change channels, and this is as individual as we are.

Some like to:

  • Run, walk, dance - any movement helps us change channels

  • Breathe, meditate, encourage mindful moments

  • Practise gratitude and appreciation

  • Play music or stretch

  • Take a break, or

  • Call or message a friend

We have so many choices when it comes to focus and how to change our focus.

As we build our self awareness we can catch ourselves focusing on what is working in our day or in our lives, or what is not. We can choose to focus on what we are giving to others, or what we are expecting from others or a situation. We can choose to focus on what we are grateful for, or what we think is missing. We can choose to focus on where we are going, or where we’ve been, or where we are right now. We can choose to focus on waiting for someone to come and fix things, or in finding our own way forward. Or what went well about the presentation, or what we forgot to mention.

Start to apply this concept to a day, to your work, or your relationship, your health, your finances, your friendships, your week, your month, your year, and your life, and see what you start to filter in.

And next time you are taking a selfie or snapping a moment in time, consider how you are going with your focus. What are you choosing to focus on? What are you filtering in or out? What are you deciding that means? And what will you do as a result?

Something to think about.

‘You will never reach your destination if you stop and throw stones at every dog that barks’

-Winston Churchill

Until next time,

The PLS team



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