Look Through a New Lens

June 14, 2022

When I was three years old, my mom noticed that I would stand very close to the television to watch cartoons and other programming. At my yearly physical, an eye examination revealed the cataract that was on my left eye.

This is National Cataract Awareness month.

We’re typically able to see clearly through the lens of the eye, but cataracts cause cloudiness and as a result, it makes it difficult to see. That cataract served as the precursor to my retina detachments which would lead to thirteen eye operations. You probably know the rest.

That year, my doctors told me I’d most likely be blind for the rest of my life. Cloudiness would then consume the lens of my mind’s eye. That cloudiness creates uncertainty, fearful thoughts, and hesitation in our actions. These are all things that interfere with our ability to see clearly.  You may not be dealing with a literal cataract, but I want to help you look at life through a different lens.

First, let’s start by not complaining. There is always someone out there whose challenges are greater than yours. I’m not saying that you shouldn’t feel down or sad at times, those are human feelings - we all experience those things. Complaining isn’t going to change anything. Find something positive to focus on.

Second, take a break from social media.  I’m a firm believer that technology has been the great equalizer for me and others who live a similar experience. However, our mobile phones can sometimes cloud our lens, especially the constant browsing of social media apps.

There will always be someone who has something that you don’t have. That’s part of life.  Never allow that to interfere with the amazingness that lies ahead for you. If it means stepping away from social media to stay focused, do it. Don’t allow your sight - what you see now, to interfere with your vision - what you see for the future.

Last, seek to become a person of value.  When I was in the beginning stages of my athletic career, my athlete friends were getting shoe deals, beverage sponsors, and TV commercials. I wanted those same things, but didn’t understand how to get them.

My teammates got opportunities because of the value that they brought to the table. Sure, they were amazing athletes, but they were also great communicators. They shared their story in a way that could captivate a crowd. They didn’t focus on money, they focused on becoming people of value.

Acquire as much knowledge as you can in the areas of life that interest you. Read as much as possible. Connect with other great minds that can help you level up. Do everything in your power to become a person of value because when you do this, success and opportunities will find you.

We will all experience some level of blurred vision in life, but it doesn’t have to remain this way. We do have the ability to change our prospective and create clarity not only in our eyes, but in our minds.