Perspective taking exercises can be hard work. It involves putting aside your beliefs to understand an opposing viewpoint. Having the skill of perspective thinking however, will prove to be an invaluable trait. You will see that training your mind for perspective thinking will make you much more successful in all your endeavors. You will be able to show empathy, understand problems better and overcome the effects of conflict – All because you are able to put yourself in the shoes of others.
Here are some great perspective taking exercises that will make you more successful in life:
Diversify your circle of friends
Their is a reason why companies and teams incorporate diversity. It works. Having people from different backgrounds and views in a team can foster innovative ideas and varying viewpoints which can give the best solutions to problems. In a similar way, diversifying your friends i.e. not always surrounding yourself with mirror images of yourself; you are able to gain a different perspective on life. This perspective taking exercise will teach you tolerance and understanding.
Read! And Read! – Best of all perspective taking exercises
Reading is one of the best perspective taking exercises you will ever undertake. The cherry on top is that it is the best way to gauge the viewpoints of some of the smartest people in the world without even speaking to them. What I found reading able to do is expand your knowledge and fix stereotypical viewpoints. Often we grow up brainwashed by parents and society and go with the flow since it seems correct and from the people we love. It is only through learning about new ways of doing things, often through books, that we realize a new way of life. This new way of life may actually be something challenges our predetermined outlook on life making us change for the better.
Be prepared to walk in the other guy’s shoes
Apart from the benefits of change on the mind, trying out new things that we were opposed to can actually prove to be an excellent perspective taking exercise. It will give you more insight on the new perspective and you may even find that it will change the way you look at things. To give you an example: I never was much of a reader of inspirational books and often saw it a waste of time. But I decided to give it a try through a recommendation. Initially, it seemed like a lost cause, but I kept going. Today my whole perspective has changed. After reading and applying concepts in these books I have come to realize that my entire perception was faltered and have now developed a positive attitude toward self-development. You too can find positive outcomes through a change in perspective.
Practice the art of listening
It is easy to lose your shit when someone disagrees with you. How easy is it to defend you point? And how difficult is it to listen to someone oppose it? The skill of listening however is of paramount importance and one of the most lucrative perspective taking exercises. You will find that once you open up yourself to listen to others they will be obliged to return the favor. The act of listening will also help you to understand the difference in opinion and counter with a meaningful defense. This is an excellent technique to use in both a personal and professional settings. Be the last to speak and it will enable you to make a much more compelling argument.
Practice these perspective taking exercises and you will be one step close to achieving success in your life. Varying perspective can be a game changer. It will give you clarity and hope in times of uncertainty.
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To learn how to live life consciously and with a clear perspective; read this ultimate guide: A Mindful Approach To Self Actualization