We have, for the most part, the feelings we choose to have.
Please don’t be angry with me if you prefer to be tragic. I do not deny you this choice. I deny only that you have no escape.
Our feelings in the first moment are triggered by our circumstances. Happy news. Sad news. News that makes us angry. But in the second moment, and the third, our feelings are the produce of our chosen perspective.
What angle of view do you choose when you examine the day that lies ahead of you and all the days that lie behind? What is your perspective? Where do you aim your eyes? What produce do you grow in the soil of your imagination and the sunshine of your life?
Jeanne Hébuterne was a 19 year-old art student in 1917 who fell deeply in love with a dashing Italian artist named Amedeo Modigliani. A year later, their daughter was born out of wedlock and the Hébuterne family was horrified. When that little girl was 2, Modigliani died. The next day Jeanne Hébuterne threw herself out a fifth-story window. She was only 22 years old.
Modigliani’s sister adopted the little girl and raised her as her own.
The girl inherited no art. She died in 1984.
What do you suppose the little girl felt as she was growing up? Did she say,
“My father was an alcoholic, drug-addicted loon who refused to marry my mother when she became pregnant and my mother did not love me enough to raise me. She killed herself the day after my father died.”
Persons who would choose this perspective, and the feelings that accompany it, always say they are being “honest and realistic.”
But is that really true?
Would this perspective be any less honest or realistic?
“My father was an artist whose paintings of my mother sell for many tens of millions of dollars. My mother was so deeply in love that she literally could not live without him. I am the product of that love.”
I do not know what the little girl chose to think, and feel, and believe.
I know only that she had a choice.
As do you.
Roy H. Williams
PS – Advertising, like politics and evangelism and art and every other form of selling, is merely the presentation of carefully chosen facts, arranged in such a way as to cause people to think and feel and believe and behave differently. Advertising is what I have chosen to do with my life. If what I have chosen might help you accomplish what you have chosen, perhaps we should spend some time together. The Magical Worlds Communications Workshop is 3 days/4 nights on the campus of Wizard Academy in lovely Austin, Texas. Upcoming sessions begin March 26 and May 14. Or if you would prefer private consulting, we can do that. What do you want tomorrow to bring? – RHW