Back In Focus

I love MindFULL Mondays. They encourage me to reflect on what fills me up, especially when I can slip into focusing on what drains me down.

Today’s reflection reminds me that I am one lucky person. I have had the good fortune of crossing paths with some incredible people. People who inspire me. People who leave me feeling the better for knowing them. People who leave a colorful mark on my Spirit.

Its important to remember this when I know better and still waste precious time perseverating on something silly, like let’s say…people who can’t return an email in a timely manner or without the words (every time) “sorry it has taken so long, but…” Or…or…or…

How do we change our focus? Change our lens!

And how do we do that? One way is simply in recognizing the g-dwink moments that show up to remind you that they are here.

I had one of those moments last month. Actually, it was my birthday and I was thinking of all of the things I wanted this year to be about. One was to re-learn how to use my camera. Two years ago, I received a beautiful camera from my family. It was meant to replace the two fabulous cameras I had received from one of THE creative muses in my life, K. James Kropp.

“Jim”, as he was known in my younger days, was a Creative Director in my first agency. Friendly, willing to teach, open to possibility and breathtakingly creative, Jim blessed me with his friendship as I moped over to the Account side and really longed to be on the Creative. When we both left the agency, we stayed friends and for years, talked and inspired each other. When I graduated from The Ed School at Harvard, Jim came to Cambridge and gifted me with his two old Canon cameras. One for B&W and one for Color. We walked the city (OK,  I walked and he rollerbladed) and he taught me how to use the cameras. Months later, when I was visiting him in Chicago, with my new eyes I took a series of city shots that rest on my mantel, today.

So, as I thought about learning how to use my (sorta) new camera this year, I sent a hello to my old friend. Of course, as creative sparks often happen with Jim, he told me in his return note about his new book, “Capturing Beauty with Your Camera – 10 Tips To Taking Better Photographs” ( and sent me a copy as a birthday present. It is delightful. In 10 easy tips, Jim teaches you how to look through a new lense, using the scenery of his cruise on Le Ponant to Sicily and Italy in October, 2009. He fills the pages with pictures and a few simple points that bring clarity and insight to the reader and doer.

I don’t know which has had more of an impact. The fact this man and his book showed up (again) when I was longing for a teacher or the fact that this man and his book showed up when I was longing (again) to change my focus.

It doesn’t matter. What does matter is that they did and so did I. I think you will, too. Even if you aren’t into photography, go online and check out his website, Allow him to transport you to far away places. And just maybe, when you return, you too will have a new focus on the moments that matter. And you can delete those that don’t.


How do you  MindFULLY change your focus? Let us know!