Years ago I was dating Brian, a guy who I liked a lot, but, I knew he wasn’t right for me. He treated me well, was like my best friend, and I trusted him completely. Sounds perfect? Some friends didn’t understand why I knew it wouldn’t, or really couldn’t, be a permanent relationship. While all of the attributes I mentioned are things I want in a partner, he was missing something that I couldn’t live without—color in his life!

Everything in his life was in black and white. He just saw the surface of everything. Everything was good or bad. He either loved something or didn’t like it at all. The main problem was he didn’t scratch the surface of what he saw. He missed all the details and just took in the main picture. I remember when I talked about these feelings with a friend, she immediately knew what I meant and pointed to a painting on her wall.

She asked me to tell her what I saw in it. I saw the beach, and boats of different colors, some with sails, some rowboats, some speeding with a water skier on the back. I saw the suds of the waves, the different shades of the sand as it got further from the water. I saw many more details. Had I shown that to Brian, he’d have said he saw a scene by the water. Period. If I asked what was in the water, he’d reply, “boats.” He saw no distinctions or colors. Just a water scene with boats.

Brian had no passion for life. He didn’t take in enough to feel appreciation for life’s little nuances. That reflected his overall lack of excitement over things he saw and did. If I bought good coffee and asked how he liked it, he’d reply, “it’s coffee.” He couldn’t notice the special flavor it had. Meanwhile I take in everything. It adds more flavor to life and also more enjoyment. If I asked how I looked when I had a new outfit he’d say I always looked good to him. Brian’s life was flat. Flat soda was still just soda in his eyes. I wanted the bubbles!

We all look at things around us. But those of us lucky ones also take in the details of what we look at. We see the 3-D part of life, not just the flat picture. That stirs passion, which makes life more worth living. If you just glimpse what’s around you because you’re always in a rush or you’re just someone who sees the world in black and white, try adding some color to your world. I had a friend who’d point out different kinds of doorknobs on brownstone when we’d be walking through the city. I’d never noticed how each one was unique. I still notice them now! Brian would just see a door.

He may have just seen a painting of the seaside but I saw a whole story. We’re still friends but I want to share my life with someone who can look at and appreciate the details of life with me. Then we can share what each of us notices. Taking in the details of your view of life is fun. And it gives your surroundings more meaning. If you want to feel more passionate about your life, start by looking beyond the surface of what you see and take in the colors, texture, etc., including people. You can color your world by opening your eyes and paying attention to what you see.

Take the 31 Days of Self-Love Challenge–a pledge to do something loving for yourself for the next 31 days–and get my book, How Do I Love Me? Let Me Count the Ways for free at Read my 31 Days of Self-Love Posts from 2012 HERE.

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