See Yourself With New Understanding

Submitted by Jayme King on 2014/03/10 at 7:38 pm

After reading The Parallax, I realized that I might be able to see my life and daily activities in a different perspective.  This book had very good and detailed examples of how people changed viewpoints after reading about Frank and Sarah’s story.  Some involved relationships, work, or the past that they cannot change.  It seems like today that everyone doesn’t have time for anything.  I find myself using that excuse too often, when in reality, I’m just not using my time wisely.  This book makes you just want to stop time for bit so we can reflect on our lives, past or present.  Here recently, our college has been facing 2 student deaths, one being my basketball teammate.  It has really focused my attention on the “here and now” because life really is too short.  Doing an analysis of yourself, like presented in this book, can help you re-focus and see what really is important in your life.  Having that “a-ha” moment may just be what some people need to redirect their lives.

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56 thoughts on “See Yourself With New Understanding

  1. After reading the parallax I took some time and really thought about all of the times in my life where a change in perspective completely changed my feelings about a situation. It is amazing how much just thinking about something in a different way can change me from angry to acceptance, or from sadness to happiness. The problem I personally have is finding the catalyst to help me change my point of view. As a naturally very stubborn person, I’ve found that the most effective way for me to see things in a different light is to discuss the situation with someone I know keeps my best interests in mind all of the time. My mom usually fulfills that role for me but some of my close friends are able to turn me around on occasion. I’ve recently been trying to make myself more effective in my ability to help myself see different perspectives because there are so many occasions when there is no one around to help. This is a skill that I realize will take time to come up with however The Parallax gave me the idea to start writing things down and after trying that a few times it really has helped.

  2. Although I have never actually written things on paper, there have been times in my life where I have reflected on past events. But I have always done this from my own point of view. I had never even considered looking at it from another perspective. The Parallax opened my eyes to that. Now when there is a troubling situation, whether it makes me sad or angry, I take a few minutes to look back on the situation. It can sometimes be difficult to look at things from a new direction. I think that talking with others about that situation is the easiest step that can be taken to gain new insights about others perspectives. That is why when I find myself struggling with a situation in life, I find myself naturally wanting to talk with family and friends. They can show me things that I would have never even considered.

  3. The author and this commenter both point to the important of perspective and reflection. One of my favorite authors, Carl Sagan, is also a proponent of appreciating and understanding ones perspective. The perspective that Carl Sagan proposes one far from the earth and all earthly problems. There is a famous picture and book by the same name called Pale Blue dot. that phrase is a reference to a photograph taken by the Apollo spacecraft, as it was travelling to the outer solar system. It was the farthest any photograph of the earth had ever been taken from. It gives us a unique perspective. It forces us to reflect, and to value see that which is familiar from a different place to see something new. We all fall into the comfortable personal perspective that gradually narrows and closes us to new ideas, possibilities, and prevents us from growing. I think the important point to understand is that we should not wait to find new perspectives, and reflection. Rather we should attempt to expand our perspective every day, in order to be open to constant improvement.

  4. The Parallax had an interesting way of illustrating how perspectives really do impact situations. Two people present in the exact situation could easily walk away with two different recollections and impressions. Something that was said randomly in passing could have unforeseen effects on someone else. I enjoyed the latter part of the book when it changed from Frank’s first person perspective into an observation in third person; it was easy to imagine the different perspectives.
    Additionally, if you take a step back and give your own life a new perspective it becomes easy to create a new outlook. I can relate to the comment about not having enough time to do things, but it’s all in your prescriptive of how you’re actually using your time. Once you take a step back you may realize that you weren’t using the time you had wisely.

  5. Reading the Parallax brought back memories of keeping a diary as a child. Although it was mainly for fun, I would write in it whenever I had a chance. As time went on, I gradually stopped writing down my daily thoughts or activities and I would only write a little blurb if something truly amazing or terrible happened. Once I got to a certain age, I stopped writing all together. As we see with Frank and Sarah, they begin to reminisce about past events while waiting to hear from their daughter. The tragedy of September 11 is what sparks their memories and make them see them in a new light. As time goes on, they revert back to their normal habits but as strain is put on their life and relationship, Frank learns how writing down his story helps him get a better perspective on events. It makes me wonder if writing down important or exciting events in my life will help me understand what’s going on in my life. With the stress of school and work, writing would be a way to escape and might even help me find ways to reduce my stress and help me manage my time better.

  6. Before I started reading The parallax, I was worried about the time I will spend trying to understand every word I read because English is not my first language. The book was clear and easy to read yet had a strong and clear message. It was amazing how I find myself thinking about how I feel towards every obstacle or a challenge I face in life, asking myself how my perspective could help solving my problems or even causing them?
    The message that I’ve learned after reading this book is that changing my own perspective could open a new window that I’ve never known it existed. For example, I’ve always complained about having a lot of tasks to do and not having enough time, Now, I take a few minutes whenever I find myself thinking in that way and look at things differently. Successful people always had 24 hours in each day just like me and everybody on this planet; they still could do whatever they want it to do and succeeded. I would not think in this way a few months ago!!!

  7. Reading The Parallax made me think about my outlook on life. Life is what you make it. Your attitude is everything when dealing with whatever life throws at you. Two different people could be in the same situation, but might have different outcomes depending on their attitudes. Sometimes things happen that make you reevaluate your life and what really matters. Losing a loved one can put things in perspective. Things that you thought were important start to become not as important as spending time with the people that mean the most to you. Sometimes life can get so busy that we lose sight of what matters most. The Parallax is a good reminder to take a moment every once in a while and look at your life and make sure that you have your priorities straight.

  8. After reading The Parallax, I realized the importance of numerous events in life. The first example I can think of from the book is when the narrator accidentally destroys a leaf from a previous hiking trip. This angers his wife may can try to remember when the leaf came from. This is happened a few times when someone else says that there’s an important connection to an object that I just either throw out or accidentally destroy like the narrator.

  9. Reading the Parallax taught me to have a different outlook on not only my life, but the lives of those around me. Through Frank and Sarah’s story, I was challenged to look at events in my own life that have been difficult and see them in a different light. In the text the story that hit a particular chord with me was Nicole’s in Chapter 3. In the workshop, she reflects upon the death of her grandfather. She had stated that at the time she focused on how much she would miss him and the toll it would have on her life. However, in her writing she writes from her grandfather’s point of view and gains a completely new perspective of the situation. She thought about the fears her grandfather must have had with his diagnosis. I think especially in my own life this is applicable, as often times I think of the consequences I will face from particular situations and not how it affects those around me. I think that using this tool that can be particularly helpful in many relationships as you are able to change your perspective and consider the thoughts of those around you as well.

  10. After reading the Parallax I started to realize how differently everyone looks at the same event. Every event can effect different people in many different ways. Just like when the people in the story started to share their writing and wrote not only from their view of the event but from their loved one’s viewpoints. After doing this they were able to understand the situation more clearly and begin to really accept and embrace the lessons and emotions for the events. By reading this book, I realized that no two people see a situation the same way, and they do not get the same feelings from it that someone else might have. These realizations will be helpful continuing forward in personal and professional life to remember that everyone is different but still connected by experiences.

  11. I can definitely relate to this. At times, I feel like studying and focusing on getting the best grades possible is the only thing going on in my life. The need to do well academically has sometimes taken over my life, when in reality there are more important things – such as paying attention to my family, friends, and my emotional and spiritual well-being. It is important for me to take a step back from my schoolwork now and then and reflect on how I feel about my life. Will I regret the priorities I’m making now a few years down the road? What choices can I make in order to improve myself as a person overall, rather than just a student? After making these reflections, I will designate more time for talking and hanging out with my friends and family. I also take out time in my day to do things that are emotionally and spiritually fulfilling for me– such as reading or watching my favorite television show. In such a rigorous academic program, it is easy to neglect the other elements of who you are and what matters in life. Like it was said in the post above, life is short, so make time now for what is truly important.

  12. After reading the Parallax, I realize that I hardly view other perspectives except my own. I feel like that’s natural for everybody, though. You get so caught up in your tedious life routine that you forget to stop and breath for a second. That’s what the Parallax caused me to do. I’m completely guilty of being caught up in my own emotions that I hesitate to even think about what it’s like in the other person’s shoes. What also spoke out to me was how important the aspect of communication is. Frank kept things hidden from his wife that he probably should have shared right when he was experiencing those emotions. Blocking those emotions out to the world can destroy even the most important relationships in your life, even though hiding those feelings seems like the easiest thing to do.

  13. The Parallax provides a unique perspective of how to view the world around us through metaphors about marriage, personal relationships, and even professional or business relationships. Pharmacy school has definitely shaped and changed my perspective on my own life. Each semester I feel the pressure of keeping my grades up, while working as many hours as I can to finance these endeavors. I spend most days stressed out and worrying about how I am going to get the tasks of each week completed. Like Frank, I feel like it has made me incredibly selfish. Instead of enjoying the breaks I do get to take with friends and family, sometimes I feel I am not “fully present,” meaning although I am physically present, my mind is usually elsewhere thinking about what I could be doing instead to get ahead in my schoolwork. Recent family events have forced me from my school bubble back into the real world to help my family out. At first I felt a little lost, however, after reading the parallax I have a better understanding of how to be more effective and supportive for my family during this difficult time. I have learned to look past my own troubles to see the bigger picture of what is going on around me. I have reflected on my past and developed a new set of priorities. Learning to appreciate the small things will save me from missing out on the finer things in life.

  14. The purpose of the Parallax is to encourage readers of the book to see how writing can produce a shift in perspective and lead to greater self-awareness. The story begins with Frank telling the story of his and Sarah’s 25th wedding anniversary in the Rocky Mountains. Confronted with the national tragedy of 9/11 and uncertainty about the fate of their daughter, the couple find occasion to reflect and share their feelings with one another. By revisiting the story of their visit years ago to Odessa Lake, Frank and Sarah are able to better understand one another. By reexamining the story from each other’s perspective, the couple is able to achieve a resolution of past misunderstandings and a “reordering of priorities.” In the next chapter, we meet Frank again but he is sharing the story from the first chapter as part of a workshop on improving personal effectiveness. Through the characters who share their own stories at the workshop, we see how writing and storytelling can produce self-improvement on a personal level as well as in terms of leadership. As the reader progresses through the story, they get first-hand experience of shifting perspective as more details about the characters are revealed. As the author intended, this forces the reader to constantly reevaluate how they are connecting with the story. Even at the end, when the reader is starting to feel that they’ve gotten the full picture, the author forces us to shift perspective again with the last line of the story (when we realize that the narrator is Frank’s late daughter Katie). I’m going to try to commit myself to take the lesson of this story and apply it in my own life. This book has inspired me to set time aside for therapeutic writing of my own. I hope that I will get the same sort of benefit from such writing as the characters in this book.

  15. This book brought to bare some really tough issues. Everyone is forced to look in the mirror and come to terms with how they are perceived by others. This can be a devastating event for many people. We become very comfortable lying to ourselves about ourselves to create an idealized image of us in our minds. finally learning how we are perceived by others can be emotionally shattering. This book helps encourage people to stop and consider how others around feel and think about the given situation. The world doesn’t revolve around you, there are actually others out there with differing emotions. Empathy is not an inherent trait, but an acquired skill. Only through understanding ourselves can we begin to understand others.

  16. The Parallex provides a unique view of the effects of reflecting on your past. I found it very interesting how it said that thinking about memories can consume you with guilt and grief. Looking in the past can be sad sometimes for me, but I see looking in the past to be more of a healing process like explained later in the book. I have never really written things down in the past, but after reading this book I realize how it can help heal people. It can bring up both good and bad memories, and help people to organize their thoughts and memories. Without thinking about the past and writing things down, all of the regrets can build up, like in the book.

  17. I was really glad that I got the chance to read this book this semester. The Parallax brought me a true sense of self-reflection and gaining insights from life experience by trying to see things in different perspectives. Being in such rigorous academic program, there were times when I found myself weighing between what I am gaining and sacrificing to achieve certain goals in life, and oftentimes, I realized that lots of times I rushed into doing things and making decisions without really take the time to reflect on them or to pay close attention to the little things that indeed matters the most in life. Also, it makes a great point on how important it is to find yourself and understand yourself first before you could try to begin understanding others around you. And lastly, just because we all face the situation does not mean we can expect others to reflect on it the same way you do; instead, it’s better to appreciate the difference and learn from it.

  18. I found the parallax to be a very insightful book that allowed me to recognize the importance of emotional intelligence on personal effectiveness. Throughout the story related by Frank, you are able to first see the “suffocating silences” that are a broad theme in the novel. These silences are gradually overcome with the revealing of long hidden emotions, as Frank finally expresses himself to his wife. With this change you are able to see a strengthening of the connection between spouses, that thus enable them to walk hand in hand along the trail to a mutual horizon. After reading the parallax I realized the importance of being cognizant of my own emotions, and understanding that the way you view a situation impacts the direction that you take. It shows that oftentimes all that changes in life is perspective. I can relate the ideology to a popular theme in American culture, is the glass half empty or half full? How do you react to the half-filled glass? This to a degree plays a large part in determining if someone is optimistic, and happy, or pessimistic and sad. The parallax helped show that sometimes writing is enough to help change one’s perspective.

  19. While finishing The Parallax, one of the very last passages of the book really spoke to me. This passage spoke about how one’s story is not just solely from their point of view but it is made up of everyone’s point of view that that person is around or has influenced. This stood out to me because I feel that most people do not take into account how they are view by others around them. They develop this image of themselves that sticks with and defines them no matter what others say about them. I feel that this final passage in The Parallax is a message for people to learn to consider. People must consider how their actions and words influence those around them and also how they define themselves. The ability to be able to see oneself through someone else’s eyes is a truly unique talent that I feel most people never develop. I believe that it goes right along with the principle of empathy. If you can put yourself in someone else’s shoes emotionally then you should be able to visualize the light that they view you in and how your words and action affect them.
    More often than not I feel that I have been oblivious to this factor of perception and have not really taken it into account. Yet after reading The Parallax I found that I tended to care more about what people thought about my words and actions than I did before. I think this is because that now I am determined to promote a good image for myself and I want myself to be seen in a positive light by others. I do realize, however, that other’s perceptions of me do not matter on a major scheme, but they do make things far easier in life. I’m not at all saying that one should be “fake” in order for people to approve of him/her, but I am saying that one can make a conscience effort to improve themselves so that they can be seen in high graces from everyone’s point of view. This of course is very difficult because everyone sees things differently because they have lived through different experiences in their lives which shapes their point of view. The true skill lies with those who are able to put their past experiences aside and observe others from an unbiased, blank view of perception. I hope that someday I am able to put all my skeletons aside and view others from a nonjudgmental point of view so that way they can be sure that their story is pure.

  20. As human beings, we allow many futile things to consume our lives. Whether this be guilt, work, or school, none of these are worth losing your sanity or the people that you care about for. Though it is hard for people to change, the Parralax is a perfect representation that people can make up for their mistakes and get past their faults. The past is the past for a reason. It should not define who a person is or who they can be. Guilt is an unnecessary burden that some people unfortunately carry around for the rest of their lives. To those people I say, let it go. Others consume their lives with work and have little to no time to actually live. Life is too short to worry about what happened in the past or how hard you can work to impress your boss or coworkers. Your friends, family, and life are here for you now and those are the important aspects you should be focusing on. They may not be here when you get around to realizing that.

  21. After reading The Parallax, I was able to reflect on my own life; not that I have never reflected before, but a different kind of reflection. In my life, I juggle being in school, making time for my family, my friends and my relationship, and it can be quiet overwhelming. With so much going on, it is hard to balance the different areas of my life. Sometimes it even feels like I am being suffocated, like Frank. After we see Frank gain a little perspective and realize the importance of self, we see him take steps that allow him to communicate better with his spouse. But in order for him to have gotten there, he needed to look at a life differently. Either he could continue to live in suffocating silence or he could find a way to be happy. Your life is what you make it to be. There are some who conquer anything in their path and then there are those who feel conquered. But gaining some perspective can change a lot. I can either get through school tackling any challenges that come my way or I can allow school to defeat me. If I look at the cup half full, focus on the light at the end of the tunnel, and stay optimistic I know that I will not be overcome by these challenges. Perspective is key.

  22. After reading the Parallax, I too began to reflect on my life and those of the people around me. Sometimes I, like many, get to consumed in my own life and only focus on my own goals, but do not really stop and think about other people and what they are going through. I guess I have never been good at trying to see the world in someone else’s shoes, which is something I now realize I need get better at doing. Another thing I took away from the Parallax was how important communication is. I tend to be not very good at getting my point across verbally and I feel Frank too probably had the same problem until he decided to write things down. So, I think this could be a good option for me to help me improve my verbal skills as well as my writing skills.

  23. I think reading the Parallax is important because it discussed perspective. I think it’s important to be aware, not only of your own perspective and understand that it so alright for it to change, but the perspectives of others. A lot of people are so self-centered these days and only think about themselves. In order to be a decent human being, one needs to be able to set their own perspective aside from time to time and think about others’ perspective. I think that if more people would do that, we would live in a nicer, safer world.

  24. Parallax. The word, by itself, was one I had never heard of before, but this novel has given me great insight to its deep meaning. The story that was told about Frank and Sarah was one that made me realize the numerous outlooks that people can take on things. Our culture needs to be more mindful of other peoples’ perspectives on things, which in turn could help us all be able to interact with each other more efficiently and soundly.

  25. Reading the parallax really made me begin to think about where I stood in relation to Frank and I came to realize that I am a lot like him. I am a perfectionist and I always have been. I want everything to go just “right”, or whatever I think “just right” is, but by doing so I lose sight of the situation. I always seem to be focused on the wrong things and this causes me to get angry and bothered by things that are trivial. When I look back on situations I am able to see how silly it was for me to be so upset by these trivial pumps in my idea of perfection. I wish that I was able to look at the big picture more often and just enjoy the situation, and whatever happens, for what it is. This is something that I really need to work on in my life.

  26. Upon first reading the book over a year ago, Frank’s personal story caught my attention. I related to him a lot because he was very similar to me in the way he had relationships with others. Frank is a closed book and he keeps a lot of things to himself. I did the same. We both can held on to things for years until they really were not important any more. Then, and only then, did we feel comfortable enough to share our thoughts, feelings, ideas, and stories. Frank’s story brought out some of my own worries. I worried that I would be like Frank in a relationship and that I would only ever fully trust myself. I also worried that it would take a horrible eye opening event like the September 11th terrorist attacks to make me change my ways. Fortunately, I think it took simply a lot of self-reflection to change my ways and it all started with this book. In a little over a year’s time, I have opened up greatly and learned to put my heart on the line. The Parallax is a book that makes you think, and I am the kind of person that puts thoughts into action. Reflecting back on my earlier life, I see so much change in myself and it all started in Writing for Health Class with The Parallax.

  27. After reading The Parallax, I came to the realization that life is short. The life the Frank lived resembles my life in some way. He lives his life closed off and never really saying what he wants. I feel that many people do that because they’re too scared of the result of what that might say. If someone expresses how they feel too much they’re looked at as emotional. If someone doesn’t express theirselves enough, they’re looked upon as “closed-off.” As I reflect on my life, I see myself more like Frank, I tend to keep too much inside until I need to say something. After reading about how Frank was finally able to speak to his wife it made me think that maybe I shouldn’t keep too much in all the time. Vulnerabitly isn’t always bad. I’m so glad he finally did what he needed to do, because it helped me realize life is too short to not to be yourself. The possibility that life will start after finishing pharmacy school or after getting married or having children is a false hope. So as much I want to say everything can wait, maybe it is time to just live in the present and live by the motto YOLO to truly be happy and become successful. No one should look back at their life regretting that they didn’t do something or life could be better if they had take another route.

  28. As humans it’s easy to get caught up in our own day-to-day experiences. We all have our own unique perspective and we all think our perspective is the only right one. That’s all we have to go by! But this book allows us to recognize that perhaps, we should consider the alternative — That we may not always be right. I think that’s why the book “The Parallax” is effective in opening up a person’s eyes and seeing that there are an infinite number of ways to internalize an experience.

    If you don’t reflect on your own life after reading this book, then you are doing it wrong! *sass!*

  29. Perspective is such a powerful word. This book definitely made me think about how everyone experiences life differently; it’s all about perspective. Everyone who heard Frank and Sarah’s story began to write about whatever came to their mind and it was interesting to me that people wrote about stories from different people’s perspectives. Some people wrote from their grandparent’s perspective while others wrote from their own. I think that it is great that people thought about a situation from another person’s perspective because that can be difficult to do. I grew up in a small town and was very closed minded toward new ideas. I moved to a bigger city and played on a basketball team with girls from different parts of the country. I really connected with one of the girls even though I am very much a Type A personality and she is very much Type B. We can talk about anything and everything and often disagree on most topics, but it is great to get a completely different perspective on life. I always want to have a plan to follow in life and she is very much a free spirit, but I feel as though having some of her perspective shed on me, it has changed my life for the better. Sometimes it takes an event, such as the writing workshop, or a friendship to open your eyes to different perspectives in life and allows you to continue to grow as a person.

  30. When I was done reading the Parallax, I felt a lot of emotions coming out. I felt a sense of guilt and sadness overwhelm me. Going to a pharmacy school, the workload is monstrous, the campus makes me feel like I’m trapped, and the sense that friends and colleagues are also your competitor to a saturated job field. The stress and anger that I felt were always a consistent reminder of how my youth was being wasted on and how I resented everything. However, the Parallax taught me that I need to look at a different point of view. I’m not the only one going through a tough time; there are other students in my class going through the same thing and yet they seem to enjoy life as it is. And I start to wonder why? I start to reflect back on what I’ve been doing for the past few years and how my parents and boyfriend (my confidant—he experienced my outburst and other emotions when it comes to my school life, sorry Love LOL) must have went through dealing with me. I always thought that I was letting down my parents with my disappointing grades and how I must be making my boyfriend’s life a living nightmare with my constant complaining. I never took the time to understand how they actually felt. After reading one of the personal stories in the book, i realize that my parents had always been there for me—trying to cheer me up and make me happy despite my failures. And although I felt like I give my boyfriend more stress than he already was dealing with my constant complaining, he still insist to be with me when normally a guy would go running down the hills. And for the love they indirectly show me, I feel guilty knowing how much they done for me. It makes me feel that I need to do something back for them with not money and a good career to support them, but time. After all, I give time for school but not enough for my love ones. And time makes memories that last (I would know; the time and effort put into Micro will be forever scarred in my memory).

  31. Many days most of us just live life for the sake of living life. We take for granted what we are doing. We complain about being too busy and everything seems like a chore. We don’t “stop to smell the roses.” We don’t think about stopping to reflect on how our day has been. Do we really understand who we are? The Parallax establishes the importance of self-reflection and putting things to perspective as being the keys to understanding ourselves. Sometimes you think you feel a certain way, but it isn’t until you look at the situation from another angle or from the perspective of another that you see how you truly feel. The characters in the story wrote their own stories based off an experience they had only to gain understanding of their underlying feelings of their respective situations. The group learned that this understanding can help one grow as a person and writing can be a helpful way to beginning. It is never too late to start understanding who you are.

  32. Reading The Parallax made me realize that everyone has a different perspective on things. Sometimes it is easy to be judgmental on the way the people do things but that’s not a good way to look at things. Everyone analyzes stuff differently and has different opinions on life. So judging someone by what they think is our worst habit in life. By looking into someone else’s perspective on a certain situation we can be able to open our minds and think in way that is different than what we are used too. Frank and Sarah’s story shows that perspective is a major part in our lives and that each person is entitled to their own way of doing things and how they perceive different situations.

  33. I use to feel like I use my time wisely and effectively, but after finish reading this book, I realized that is not the case, the parallax made me think about “what have I been doing for my life, like Frank, sometimes I feel I am not mental present, my mind is elsewhere thinking about what I could be doing instead to do something meaningful. there were many time I rushed into doing things and making decisions without really take time to reflect on what I did. this book taught me how I need to understand myself before understanding the environment surrounding me, not to get caught by the enivronement factor like stress or social pressure and ignore the the window that is availble to us, try to adapt the situation ahead and explore other possiblility to the problem we are facing.

  34. I feel like I can relate to Frank sometimes, he seems to try as hard as he can to achieve his goals the way he wants to he doesn’t realize that his goals have shifted. I feel that the goals I had in life that I wanted to achieve a certain way have come in conflict at different points in time causing them all to change for better or worse. I feel that it may be good for me to sit down and evaluate where I stand in life currently because not only my goals have changed but also my viewpoints as well. Frank’s presentation also showed me that very similar people can have completely different viewpoints on life along with these different viewpoints among other people changing with time just like mine.

  35. While reading The Parallax, I realized that all of the stories spoke to me in some way. They reminded me of different times and different people in my life. Some of the memories that came to mind made me think about different point of views. I was only thinking about them from my perspective. Looking back, and from a different point of view, the situations have so much more insight to offer. If you can think about a situation from another point of view, it makes it easier to understand people’s actions. It provides insight, clarity and sometimes peace.

  36. Reading The Parallax was an eye opening opportunity for me. It really did force me to reflect on past experiences in my life that I found to be extremely frustrating. After reading the book, I think that had a stopped to be empathetic and see the situation from the other person’s point of view, I might have found that the situation was not as frustrating as I thought. This book was a reminder that when you are frustrated you need to step back from the situation and look at the problem from all points of view and find a solution to please everyone (if possible). Our time is too precious and we go around wasting so much time because we want to argue with other’s while defending our own point of view rather than trying to cooperate in finding a solution. Having a cooperative mentality is a great way to use your time wisely.

  37. One of the eye opening ideas I learned from this book is to actually connect with your own story. When I think back over my day or a situation I usually just replay conversations and interactions in my head as if it were a movie that I was passively watching. Now a challenge for myself after reading The Parallax is to actively incorporate understanding my story through different perspectives and work to truly engage in the reflection. I realize that you can miss so much if your perceptions are one sided; however, taking in new perspectives enables us to expand and enhance our story. As I begin to use the strategies for obtaining a clearer understanding of myself and the world around me I can actually gain a better understanding of my story, because I can challenge myself to consider how other perspectives may related. I also realize that our understanding of our story can change with time as be gain new perspectives to reflect on the past and invasion the future. It me it seems like a dynamic process, which can be frustrating to someone who studies science and likes to search for the right answer and make conclusion. However, the ideas of self reflection suggested in The Parallax can help to enrich our story as we become more aware of the bigger picture and become engaged in our own story.

  38. Reading The Parallax gave me a new perspective. I had never really considered how therapeutic writing about past memories can be to people. I didn’t realize how often it brings a change in point of view. Now it is easy for me to see how this would allow a person to reflect on a situation and see it in a new light. The excepts about Frank and Sarah gave me insight on how two people who you would think would know each other very well after years of marriage and raising a family together have major miscommunications and conflicting views on past situations that go unnoticed for years. Sometimes it takes a major event for people to connect or to realize that something needs brought into focus. Whether it be how one views a certain situation, something that went unaddressed in the past, or how one behaves, taking a step back from your own viewpoint and trying to imagine the situation in the view of how others may see it can be beneficial and give you clarity and a new perception.

  39. Reading The Parallax was an eye opening experience for me. Writing has never been my strong point, but this book has made me realize that I should consider writing for therapeutic reasons. The book also made me reflect on my life experiences. We often get caught up with school and/or work and forget to reflect and make time for ourselves. It also made me think about just how important communication is. People can go through the same situations and have totally different perspectives, which is why it is important to express how we feel to our loved ones.

  40. Like many others, after reading The Parallax it made me start to wonder what all in life I am overlooking. What things am I missing out on because I am focused on my own life and dismissing the feelings and viewpoints of others? While reading I found my mind drifting and realized that I found myself thinking about things that are happening around me that I need to reevaluate and change my perspective about. Changing perspectives allows us to have control over our emotions and accept things that we feel guilty, stubborn, sad, or angry about. Like Jayme, I also often find myself making excuses for things by saying that I am too busy and dismissing them as not important. Whether these things involve personal goals or other people, I realize that I do need to stop and take time daily to reflect on what is really important in life.

  41. The Parallax has made me think back about my past experiences and how I would have reacted differently. All of this is said in hindsight but there were many times where I thought I probably could have handled the situation better. There were also many times in the past where I did not understand why something was done, nor could I even grasp the idea of why it was done. However, now after some life experience, I have come to the realization that I could only comprehend what I couldn’t in the past because at the time I was not old enough, or not mature enough. I think what’s important is realizing some of the mistakes you have made in the past, even if it takes you a couple of years to understand. Learning from those mistakes is how we grow as people and how we can better ourselves.

  42. I am replying to this post because I think this is the most important lesson of “The Parallax.” Being able to see yourself in a new understanding or new light, or being able to see others in a different way, can change your entire world. For years, I saw myself as the studious athlete. I was good at using my brains and my brawn. Always staying up that extra hour to study or putting in an extra 500 free-throws, because that is what I knew I could do. Just pushing through and working harder that anyone around me was my forte. What I did not realize that other parts of my life were less than desirable. I had become so insecure about my appearance that I only had a few friends and any sort of attention that any boy paid me was either met with extreme skepticism, or I was totally duped once they had my trust. Without going into too many details, I was taken advantage of in different ways because I had zero self-worth. My older sister was always the knock out and I was referred to as “the other one.” Not only that, I hit puberty earlier then most which made me even more aware of how different I was than every other teenage girl. It took many years and many tears before I finally realized that I should not care about physical aesthetics. Appearance was not directly tied to my happiness and I was not going to let others dictate how my life would turn out. I finally was able to see myself for what I truly am, a good-hearted woman who deserves the best. I will give my best to only the one who is most deserving of such love. I was not ready to receive true love until I realized my self-worth through this new-found perspective. Now that I have this new outlook, I met him and I couldn’t be happier. 🙂

  43. Reading the Parallax has definitely changed my perspective on how I look at my life. I would normally focus mainly on myself and never really considered looking at my life from other viewpoints. It is so easy for one to focus only on his or her life that they may not realize how it affects those around them. Often I find myself using most of my time to study or work without focusing on the things and relationships that are also important such as my family, friends, and religion. The Parallax has made me realize that I need to make more time for others and focus less on myself.

  44. Having read the Parallax, I kind of never really thought of looking at my life in a different perspective, like the way people look at me and how my actions and my life has an impact on them. It’s interesting to note that there is no way that anyone can truly admire what it’s like to be that person on the other side of the glass and see how your life changes their’s dramatically. The Parallax kind of puts a new perspective on things that I think about. If only we all try to look at try to look at life in a completely new perspective.

  45. After reading The Parallax, I have had several realizations regarding perspective and what aspects of my life are most important. First, I realized that I rarely try to understand situations from other people’s perspectives. When I have a disagreement with a family member or friend, I normally jump to the conclusion that I am right with my opinion and never consider the other person’s perspective. This is not a good quality of mine because it can lead to further misunderstanding and damage to the relationship. Additionally, this book prompted me to evaluate what I value most in my life. My family and close friends are most important to me and there are changes that I can make to build stronger relationships. This book taught me to not jump to frustration when there is a difference of opinion with someone, but rather to listen and be open to their thoughts. Open communication is critical for healthy, long-lasting relationships.

  46. While reading The Parallax, I was most impacted by the initial reactions of the audience members. They sounded ignorant, rude, close-minded, and unwilling. Then I realized I was doing the very thing that, when they did it, caused me to form a negative opinion of them. I am known among people close to me as a perpetual optimist, always searching for a silver lining. I have no place to make judgments on a person’s character unless I understand their perspective, myself. The Universe is infinite. There is always a bigger picture. When I’m feeling negatively – whether it be anger, sadness, frustration, despair – I take a step back and remind myself that there are so many things that are more than me and my experiences, and I reevaluate my negativity from that new perspective.

  47. After reading The Parallax, I felt a renewed belief of what I see in myself, like a breath of fresh air. This book inspired me to relive my positive personal experiences and that it’s okay to be proud of what has been accomplished. But I also know what it’s like to look in the mirror and say things like: what are you doing with your life, or look at all the people you have let down. I failed to realize what others thought of me, or what their perception was of me. I was a failure. But I had to pull myself up and out of the ditch that I put myself into. And somehow I was able to do that. I had to overcome my personal pitfalls in life and turn several corners to get where I am today. Going forward, I see things from different angles, and try to relate to others by putting myself in their shoes, as they may be putting themselves in mine.

  48. Self-examination is a very important concept that we don’t take the time to do often enough. The Parallax really challenges you to see things from a different perspective. Many people, myself included, struggle with stopping to spend time self-evaluating. The difference that this concept made for the main characters, Frank and Sarah, really challenges me to do the same. Looking at your life by separating yourself from it can be very soothing. I strongly believe that it can truly make you a better person.

  49. Being able to see yourself with a “new understanding” is one of the major concepts I took away from this book. Basically, instead of focusing on the negative things in life, if we all just take a few steps back to look at everything that is good, life would appear to be an even more beautiful place. Knowing that there is something greater out there and realizing that everyone is dealing with some kind of battle, whether it be internal or external, can help to humble you in a way. By knowing that you are not the only one going through some type of struggle, you are recognizing the existence of common humanity. I feel as though I can relate to Frank’s experiences of holding everything in until it’s no longer of importance. I would like to be able to see myself in a better light and have a different perspective about the world around me so that I can move forward and make good decisions that will impact myself and others.

  50. Reading the Parallax made me focus a lot on the power of perspective related to attitude and emotions. This book emphasizes how your personal attitude often determines the outlook of your perspective. I find this to be very true when thinking about my perspective in most situations. This book also emphasizes seeing a situation from a perspective that may be different than your own. Unless confronted about a situation, I rarely think about the perspective or emotions of anyone aside from myself. Unfortunately, big life experiences often act as the only eye-openers for me. After reading this book, I want to make more of an effort to relate to others and consider their emotions when seeing things from their point of view.

  51. Reading the Parallax made me think about how different peoples’ perspective can be even in the same situation. In the Parallax when Frank accidently crushes the leaf from their trip that Sarah had been saving and then gets mad at her for being upset. Frank just thought of the leaf as a bad memory from a trip that he hated, mostly because he felt guilty the entire trip. He couldn’t understand why Sarah kept the leaf and why it had sentimental value to her. To Sarah, that leaf symbolized a new life for her, as that trip saved her life. After the trip, Sarah was diagnosed with COPD and when she went to throw out her cigarettes she found the leaf. Although the trip may not have been the best trip, it was a good memory to Sarah because the trip changed her life. This part of the Parallax just makes a person think about how they should always consider one other’s perspective over their own. Not everyone will view a situation in the same way, but that does not mean you should disregard someone’s perspective. Always be open to other’s perspectives as they may be able to open your eyes to good thing that came out of a bad situation.

  52. The Parallax really made me stop and think about my life up until now, and how much I’ve changed since graduating high school. As I’ve gotten older I’m beginning to appreciate the little things more often, and I’m starting to understand just how much I take things for granted. I’m not sure what my future holds, but I will enjoy every moment of my life here and now. Life’s too short to worry about trivial issues. I want to live a life without too many regrets. I don’t want to be like Frank and take 25 years to forgive myself for my guilt and mistakes. Life goes on, and I’m ready for one wild ride!

  53. After reading the Parallax, I realized something. I have not taken much time over the past years to evaluate where I am in life and how far I have come. My days revolve around going to class and studying for said classes. I have little time to socialize or even have a life outside of school. My friends back home are graduating college, getting married, starting families while I am still in school. In the moment, I feel as if I am falling behind in life because I have not started “my life”. But in taking a break and evaluating where I am, I realize that I am right on track, if not ahead. I chose to take a different path, focus on my education first. Of my friends from back home who are married and started families, some of them wish to further their education and go to graduate school. I am almost finished with graduate school. After I graduate, “my life” will be waiting for me. The parallax helped me remember to keep everything in perspective, realize that not everyone takes the same paths in life, and enjoy the journey.

  54. Reading The Parallax has made me take a step back to reevaluate myself and where I am today compared to where I want to be. It emphasizes the importance of keeping yourself grounded and your head clear. Staying true to one’s self and emotions is essential to staying on one’s desired path. Writing is one way to stay intact with emotions. Going back to a hobby or comfort is also a way to reconnect with emotions and stay true to one’s self.

  55. The Parallax really taught me to focus on the present. While I don’t journal about my experiences like Frank, when a challenging situation occurs in my life, I now try to stop and reflect on what has happened and see life from another point of view. It can be difficult, especially in high stress situations, to look at life from a different point of view, because many of us are stuck in our ways, but reflecting on a situation can provide a better outcome for future situations. This reminds me of the quote “hindsight is 20/20”, you see things in more clarity when time has passed and you have grown from that experience, but analyzing a situation at the time of occurrence can help provide a better outcome possibly for that situation and future.

  56. The Parallax made me realize that the here and now is more important that the past. not saying the past is not important, because we need to learn from the past so we don’t repeat history. But if you do not focus on the here and now, you could be missing out on the most important things in life. It can be difficult to do this however. Having to worry about things that are coming your way like an exam or a stressful event. but the Parallax makes it more apparent that is important to make sure you worry about the here and now

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