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Unleash your perspective

by Miqueas Barreiro

What do you think about when you hear the word “leash”? Do you think about restriction or oppression? Most people think about being forcibly held back or tied down.

But to my best friend and dog Cooper, the leash means something quite different. Every time he sees me holding it, he races around the backyard and suddenly stops right in front of the fence. He knows that when I’m holding the leash, it can only mean one thing––it’s time to go for a run! And boy does that dog love to run.

The excitement I saw in my four-year-old Brittney Spaniel when I showed him something that others saw as limiting or restrictive got me thinking.What else do we see as bad, that with a perspective shift, can be good?

I used to hate doing chores around the house. It always got in the way of my schoolwork and social life. But now that I am commuting after living in the dorms for three years, I have come to appreciate my chores. Washing the car is a great time to enjoy the sun while cooling off. Doing the dishes while my mom cooks dinner and my brother plays Fortnite is the perfect time to relate to my family. Cleaning my room provides the opportunity to organize not only my stuff, but also my plans for the following weeks.

Activities I used to loathe have become much more enjoyable now that I have changed my perspective.

Another example: the Honor Code. Some people say that it is repressive and annoying. I have heard people complain that they are adults and should be allowed to do what they want.

I challenge us to view the Honor Code the same way Cooper sees the leash. What if we got so excited for the Honor Code chapel that we started living by it before we even signed it just like how Cooper starts running before I leash him and open the gate? What kind of campus would that create?

A little perspective shift can be all that is holding us back from something truly amazing.

The mind is a powerful tool. Much research has been done to show how a properly trained mind and positive thinking can increase a person’s quality of life and physical health. Perspective plays a huge role in how the mind works.

Photo by Cicely Rubottom

Cooper could see the leash as annoying, repressive and mean. But he doesn’t. To Cooper, “leash” means a long run with his friend, new smells along the route and an affectionate “Good boy!” with a cool drink when he is done. What perspective is holding you back from enjoying your life? Are you too busy fighting the leash to enjoy the run?