Zoom in! Zoom Out!
This page is about controlling your perspective and focus while you are open. I call it zooming since it feels like thats what is occurring when you actually do it. With practice you can develop the ability to zoom in and out with your focus while you are open. Zooming is very important, everyone does it, hardly anyone controls it. If you can achieve control over zooming than you can achieve control over yourself. While control takes energy and in general we want to live freely, this is a step in the right direction. Let's look at a few examples, as usual, going deeper and deeper.
Suppose you have a sliver and your trying to get it out with a needle. Your focus becomes pinpoint, literally!
At the other end of the spectrum you can imagine yourself, looking down upon yourself as you're watching this, contextualizing your experience on this planet with billions of people on it. This can seem almost like an outer body experience.
I can remember in college I used to get caught up in solving problems and hours would pass by like they were minutes. I was very focussed and not easily distracted. This is an example of when zooming in is good. The same can be said for sports, when you're in the zone, you are perfectly focussed.
Here's a situation that I've encountered during my work. I'm talking with a contractor and we get into a disagreement over a contract issue. It always about money, the contractor wanting to cut corners in order to save money and increase profits. The contractor will always get emotional to see if that will work in order to win the disagreement. Previously I would argue logically and then if I wasn't getting anywhere I would get emotional. Now when I feel the emotions coming on I have a pinprick of awareness of it and quickly zoom out. I become detached from the situation and effortlessly parry the contractor's attempts to find a way to win the argument by hook or crook. The contractor often loses their cool; its almost inevitable when they discover tactics which have worked countless times before no longer work. Virtually all of their tactics are designed to diminish me, life is a competition, and some people don't play fair. Their reward? Unhappiness.
Before I developed the skills I have now, I would take things personally more often. Remember its nothing personal, its just personality. If you can zoom a little out from the conversation and recognize that you are reacting strongly to what is being said you can act more rationally when you need to. You will have less arguments regardless of the situation. There is plenty to disagree with in this world. You choose when and where to express your emotions rather than simply blindly reacting as someone pushes your buttons.
If you are able to zoom in and out on your own when working with your own emotions, this skill will carry over into emotional conflicts with others. You will be able to deal far more effectively with any situation. Essentially you will begin to manage how in the moment you are versus how much awareness you have over yourself and others. Managing this is dependent upon your own emotional health and whomever you are interacting with. Ideally we stay in the moment functioning to perfection regardless of the circumstances. Just like athletes, we are in the zone. However, there may be a circumstance where detaching ourselves from the situation is the best we can do. If you are able to zoom out when needed, you will be able to manage yourself when necessary. With work it gets easier and your able to spend less energy being aware and more energy being in the moment. Life gets easier, naturally!