Published monthly by Sharon Eakes, Hope Unlimited, LLC
Disciplines: Mental Models, Personal Mastery, Systems Thinking

"The real voyage of discovery consists not in
seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes."
Marcel Proust

Reframing is a way of looking at something from a different perspective. It is a powerful process used by people in everyday life and by many disciplines, including photography, conflict resolution and coaching. Reframing in conflict resolution has the goal of creating a common definition of the problem acceptable to both parties.

Because our feelings are tied to our thinking, positive reframing makes us feel better.


Driven? No, energetic!
Stubborn? No, determined!
Bizarre? No, creative!
Rebellious? No, independent!
Obsessive? No, organized!
So busy you're exhausted? No, you choose to live a rich, full life and love it.

Here's my own most recent reframe: I started with, "I dread learning how to use my fancy new cell phone," and flipped it to, "I bet it will be easy for me to use this cell phone. Just look at all the technological things I've learned to use and enjoy: lots of computer programs, the digital camera, the navigational system."

Reframing can also be helpful in relationships. My husband Hal frequently spills food on his clothes. When I first knew him, it bothered me. I encouraged him to be more cautious, lean forward, etc. When he tried to be careful, it changed his personality. So I reframed it. "Hal is an enthusiastic eater." It's true. He's enthusiastic about a lot of things and I love his enthusiasm. Reframing it made all the difference to me.


--> Change your perspective. In his acclaimed video, "Everyday Creativity." the National Geographic photographer DeWitt Jones says, "There's always more than one right answer." He suggests trying a different lens, moving closer or backing up, kneeling, climbing a tree, or standing in someone else's shoes.
--> Flip it. See the glass as half full instead of half empty.
--> Reframe the context. When Hal was losing his sight, instead of getting depressed, he said, "Each time something really bad has happened in my life, it has been followed by something really good. I can hardly wait to see the good that will come from my blindness." If the context you create for yourself is that all of life is about learning, or that difficult experiences make you stronger, anything that happens has a positive side to it.

Becoming skillful in the art of reframing is a surprisingly easy way to be a happier, more attractive person. It's worth practicing.


Join me for a 45-minute telegathering to explore the process of reframing together. Call Wednesday, May 31, at 12:00 noon EST (11:00 a.m. CST, 10:00 a.m. MT, 9:00 a.m. PST) 1-985-425-2620 X925 No need to register....just call at that time!
Reach me: 1-888-907-HOPE (4673)or e-mail I am a personal and executive coach and would be happy to offer you a complimentary coaching session by phone.

Each month FRESH VIEWS focuses on a single topic, relates it to one of the five disciplines of a learning community, and offers a coaching tip and a follow-up telegathering. Please forward it to friends and colleagues. My purpose in writing FRESH VIEWS is to nurture, prod and encourage readers to think and talk about these topics with their families, friends and colleagues. Mine is only one view. Multiple conversations may deliver us to insights only hinted at here. Such a process sustains the vitality of learning relationships, learning families, learning organizations and learning communities.

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