Perspective means everything — seeing the glass as half empty or half full being just one self-evaluative matrix we use to frame our views on the world. In Santa Barbara native Laurie Short’s new book, When Changing Nothing Changes Everything, the Oceanhills Covenant Church pastor engages with the idea of perspective, breaking it down into “lenses” that can be utilized to remain level-headed and optimistic about your current life, your past, and your future.
“Throughout life, I have become increasingly aware of the importance of perspective,” said Short. “The way we see shapes the way we respond to circumstances. You don’t have to change the circumstances, but if you change the way you see, it changes the way you respond.” The book is broken down into “lenses that provide varied responses to challenges in one’s life. One, “The Big View” lens, is meant to allow individuals to view the big picture and realize the relativity of their problems, whereas another, “The Rear View” lens, is meant to encourage people to seek answers in their past and view previous hardships as challenges and building blocks leading to who they are in the present. “If you look back and see how you dealt with a previous difficult experience, it can give you strength for the current setback. You face the problem differently. You have more courage. You can have faith to move forward — that is why the rear view is so important,” said Short.
With a background in ministry, she writes from a Christian perspective; however, the lessons in the book can be applied by individuals that come from completely different backgrounds, she said. “I really believe these lenses can be helpful to people that don’t come from a faith-based perspective,” Short said. “My hope and prayer for the book is that people can still open themselves to the concept and apply the lessons despite not necessarily deriving them from a certain faith.”
Admittedly, keeping what is occurring around you in constant perspective can be difficult, which is why daily practice can be helpful in reminding oneself of the lessons learned from this helpful book. “I think the book is a companion because you don’t just get it once and you move on. You have to work on keeping perspective, tuning into the bigger picture, and keeping your eyes open,” said Short.