There are certain people who can brighten up an entire room…just by leaving it.
A famed photographer once said that every picture that he ever took was a self-portrait. I understand this to mean that the images we capture with our various devices bear the indelible marks of the energy that we exude and highlight our ability to transform the world around us.
Isn’t it amazing when you recognize the influence that others have on your countenance and attitude? Merely being around certain people makes me feel as though my burden has been halved or lifted entirely. Some people give us hope, while others restore our faith; still others make us laugh from the tops of our heads to the soles of our feet. If we are especially fortunate, some individuals help to refute the voices of condemnation that can take hold in our minds. These mortal messengers remind us that we are special, sought after and loved.
On the flip-side, there are those who will deflate our spirits and force our souls to retreat in order to find shelter from the barrage of their negativity. We would do well to avoid people such as these in an attempt to remain afloat spiritually. These “soul-extinguishers” may never fully appreciate the effect that they have on others’ lives. It is difficult for me to admit that I can sometimes have this effect on people. I know that I would never intentionally dampen the spirits of the people with whom I come in contact, but I am certain that I do. I have no doubt that I would alter my behavior if I could more accurately gauge the impact that my energy has on those around me. Chances are good, that the pictures that I take will give me a glimpse of what my spirit draws out of others.
While on the topic of taking pictures, a very close friend of mine has just returned with his wife and son from an eighty-five day tour of Europe. Rick Lohre is a commercial photographer and his wife, Julie is a well-known exercise and wellness expert. The life that they have made affords their family tremendous flexibility and opportunities to be spontaneous. Their sojourn across Europe started out as a mission for Rick to capture thousands of travel related photos for his growing repository of online images. A week into the trip, his mission quickly took an amazingly creative detour. On an outdoor mall in Italy with his camera in-hand, Rick spontaneously started greeting locals and fellow travelers, asking each of them if he could take their picture. Later that day, after downloading the images from his camera, he was struck by the joy that spilled forth from each of the unique combinations of pixels.
A new idea was spawned. He acknowledged the creative surge that was alive in between his camera and the individuals whose images he was capturing. His new intent would be to garner images of people in the midst of everyday life; people who are fully alive as their essence is memorialized. The result of his efforts is what he now refers to as the Happy Humans Project. You can read more about it by clicking here. Phase One of the project is complete and boasts more than 200 images of happy humans; representatives from each continent and all walks of life. As part of Phase Two, Rick will add short vignettes to each image as he seeks to bolster the number of unique portraits from around the world. The intent of the Happy Humans project is really simple. It is meant as an exhibit of the power that each of us possesses to transform the world.
Ask yourself, “When I enter a room, do I bring light into this place or do I diminish it?” What words, emotions or affirmations can you contribute to increase others’ energy or to lighten their loads?
Thomas “TD” Dierker
Live like you’re dying….cause you are!