Beyond My Perception

By Kenneth Semien Sr.

These are my personal reflections, however I hope that you can relate to them in some way and consider whether you are living the fulfilled life that you were designed to live.

Oftentimes we can get caught up into ourselves and our personal daily activities; so much that we can easily become unaware of other beneficial things that may be occurring around us. Recently, during a beautiful sunny day that seemed to have the perfect breeze and calmness in the atmosphere, I was prompted to take advantage of this time to reflect on life as I view it. This quiet time allowed me to begin to be thankful for the blessings I have received in the midst of challenges I face as a person who is visually impaired, and life in general.

As I thought about it, I pictured my fenced in backyard and the patio area in which I was sitting. The thought crossed my mind about how much I could be omitting from my life if I only focused on my personal experiences and what has become my general frame of reference. I attempted to think beyond how I have perceived life to be and how I may be shortchanging myself from so much more that may be just across the fences I have created in my mind.

I took time to dwell on life lessons that I could have gained more insight from, instead of hoping that what I perceived to be a problem would just come to an end so I could move on to something more pleasant. Could it be that I have ignored some intricate details because I only expected certain circumstances based on what I knew and faced previously?

I reached the point of realizing that it’s not too late to broaden my view of life and decided that it was time to advance beyond my perception of reality and immediately begin exploring more than what seems to readily appeal to me. I came to the conclusion that it is no coincidence that I have been presented with the vast array of challenges I have had and every experience has revealed something for me to learn in support of achieving my God given purpose for existing.

Recognizing the fact that I declared years ago that I would not settle for mediocrity because when I attempted to do so, I was most unhappy and unfulfilled.  At times I actually permitted others who found it easy to simply exist, to influence my way of thinking. Not considering the future effects, I found myself withdrawing from what I knew to do. I have discovered that we can easily begin to settle for less when we fear failure more than we focus on what can be accomplished if we tried to move beyond our fear.

How many times have I rejected constructive criticism from others due to my ego and superficial pride, when if I had taken heed, I could have been better prepared to propel above the obstacles I allowed to delay personal achievements I now desire to make during this phase of my life.

How many times have I ignored words of wisdom because it came from someone who I decided that wasn’t worthy to impart it, although I was seeking a solution to a problem? How many times have I assumed something to be one way only to find out it was so different from what I imagined?

What would happen if I allowed myself to laugh more, smile more, listen more and even love others more? What if I were more willing to share, care, and respect the opinions of others even when I don’t see eye to eye with them, or can barely comprehend why they think the way they do? What if I were to strive to place a greater focus on what could be built to create trails of hope for all who I come in contact with? What if I were to see things in a more positive light and combat the negative thoughts that seem to cause forfeiting of needed results?

These are only a few questions that I can think of to cause me to make the best of my talents and abilities as I take advantage of the gift of time before it’s too late. My destiny only waits for me to choose to travel the right course.

In conclusion, I make a personal commitment to reach out and reach up to grasp more than I have before and conclude that it is imperative that I think before I speak; monitor my actions and associate with others having similar goals and aspirations to ensure that I achieve all that I am intended to achieve. I can’t permit myself or anyone else to place limits on my personal growth.  It is of the utmost importance that I keep the past in the past and allow myself to flourish into a brighter future as I strive to become the well-rounded individual that I am meant to be.

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