Imagine if you will a straight line that is directly in front of you. It stretches from your left to your right. In the center of that line there is a framed area. In that frame you can see the center point on that line as well as a bit to the left and the right of center.
Now, imagine that the line you are looking at represents how your day is going.
At the furthest point of one end, for discussion’s sake, let’s say that at the left end of the line, there is darkness and despair. Then at the opposing end of the line there is light and hope.
In the frame, we see the place that is in between both the worst of places and the very best. So, when we move it in a direction the frame acts as our window on how our day is going. If we focus on the despair end of the line then we will see despair. If focused on the hope end of the line, we will see hopeful outcomes and our day will get better. Generally, we tend to land as a human someplace in the middle most of the time.
Like any other window, we are able to see what is on the other side of it. So, if we allow our window to be moved in a direction to either side of center, even in the slightest, we move our frame of reference, our window. Then we begin to see the world through the perspective of that window.
As a rule, when we use the window as a lens, a perspective, to view a line of reference like governance, leadership, management, politics, ethics, morals, faith & so on, we can do so with greater success when we know the scale. Simply because, when we know what the worst of the scales end is, we are able to view the outcomes of that end. This gives us an opportunity to move our window along the line to a place that is better suited to providing reward instead of penalty. As you adjust these windows across the many referential lines of life and bring them to bare on a place individually suited to your self-honesty, you build your own reality.
Allowing the window to move in a direction of what we know to be a-moral, even in the slightest, still moves the window. It moves it in a direction of darkness, negativity or what ever desperate label you give it.
If you are let’s say a Village Manager, and you openly break the law, even if it is just a little at a time, you still are moving the window towards lawlessness. In doing so you are limiting the view of lawful outcomes. Do this enough, and as a top Manager, your subordinates start to view things through that same window of your leadership.
It becomes OK to turn your head here, or overlook the tedious and mundane. Whether it is right to do it or not. This has already begun to manifest in the culture managed by the current Village Manager in Indiantown, Howard Brown.
At the last regularly scheduled Village Council meeting, just this sort of occurrence took place. Here are Howard’s own words:
If you think for a minute that the rest of the Staff has not noticed these types of overt slides to the side of breaking the rules because of “the ends justify the means” attitude, you are sorely mistaken. We have documented evidence of the fact. One such case involves some less than detailed oriented procedural laws that have been violated by Code Enforcement. When you are talking about the potential of a home owner having a lien placed upon their home that is reprehensibly excessive, it makes a difference.
We have another documented event that took place by a Senior Director when they wrote scripts for the PZA Board to read in complete favor of one side over another. Thus, not allowing the Board to exercise its lawful choice towards their will & not the “rule makers” will of outcome. The window shifted.
There is example after example of this fact over time.
One small step to one side or the other eliminates an equal view of the other. When we move to far towards the “bad” end of the line, well then, our window shifts closer and our actions reflect the boundary we frame our reality in. So over time, you end up in a place like Opa-Locka, Pahokee, Belle Glades, corrupt and demoralizing with negative outcomes for all involved.
As we move closer to the other end of the scale it is not humanly possible to maintain an achievable level of perfect standard for extended periods. To do so would require every other referential line to be brought into similar proximity of scale to be able to maintain the high degree of perfection represented by the far end of the line’s representation. Some come closer than others at maintaining that light of scale vs. the darkness of the scale.
Said another way. We cannot have portions of our life that conflict with each other. Many tend to allow the dominant window to shadow or draw the blinds on the value and principle-based windows we have open. It is far easier to drift towards the darkness than to the light. The darkness requires nothing of you except the degeneration of your soul, the light requires, education, growth and determinable effort towards the same. It is not easy.
There is not one of us that have all of our windows in the light 100% of the time. It is just not possible. Especially when you are using learning as a line of reference. If one is to learn from living, then we have opportunity to move into a better suited environment that is closer to the light filling the room in every corner.
When you watch for those shifts that we allow to nudge our windows towards the darkness, be aware of them. Why?
They will move your window in the same direction otherwise. Sort of like the life lesson taught by my father. He taught me many years ago that the people you associate with in your life circle will have influence on your perspective. Know who you are standing alongside.
If you surround yourself with people that are of a negative ilk, you too will soon become the same. If you associate with those that are graciously achieving and working to do no harm and bring light, then you too will reap the rewards it brings. Most humans find solace in the center of the overall reference line of “life”. It balances.
How? Well, if your unawareness of “window shifts” take place gradually and over a long period of time, you are less likely to see it occurring. Unless you are paying attention to those reference lines that really effect the parts of life bigger than you, they will have full control over you. What are your end points on these lines of reference?
Where do you see your window on these lines?
These things are larger than us. Not focusing on them is self-negligent. If you do not focus on the nudges that shift over time then you are allowing somebody or something else to move the window for you. That is a really big leap for a soul to take. So, know who you are standing with.
The longer you leave the light from coming through your window, the darker your room will become. The longer you leave the “window shifters” to remain in a place they can move the window in a direction antithetical to American Values, Standards and Principles, the sooner your windows will be moved towards the darkness. It Starts with you!
2021 ~ Eric D. Miller