What Do You See When You Look Into the Mirror?

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Most of us look into a mirror everyday.  It is one of the first things we do in the morning as we brush our teeth and get ready for the day. Recently I experienced a new awareness of my morning routine. I don’t think of myself as having low self-esteem or self-image problems, but here was a wake-up call. When I look into the mirror… I pick myself apart. I look for every blemish that may be there or may be starting. I analyze every wrinkle, every pound gained or lost. It is judgement in its harshest form.  I look into my own eyes and I am horrible. If anyone else ever said the things I said to myself I would think them mean, cruel, and harsh.  It seems a horrible way to start out actually….

What’s worse? I know I am not alone. Anytime I am in a public bathroom, myself and others are just there, staring.  Sometimes we even talk to each other about our latest self-criticism. I can picture all our thoughts, circling… we see ourselves as fat, haggard, ratty, wrinkled, blemished, tired looking. All of it some form of dysmorphia. I rarely see what they think the problem is with their face or body when they confess to me. How do you pick yourself apart? How cruel are you to yourself?

So I have an experiment for myself, inspired by Louise Hay and her suggested mirror work, and I hope you’ll join me. For one week I am not allowing myself to lean into the mirror and pick myself apart. I am going to find something I like about it instead and keep my distance from my pores.

Can you look into the mirror and give yourself a compliment? Not once in a while when you are having a good hair day, thin day, or whatever else…but everyday? Can you look at yourself and see how beautiful others see your eyes, your smile, your cheekbones, dimples?

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Thanks to the lovely Lauren Adams for posing for this post!

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Are You Holding Yourself Back?

Sitting across from JoAnne in a cute little find in Brooklyn we begin to analyze our lives over cocktails. We pick apart the things that threaten to hold us back. A favorite pastime of  the over-analytical.

I bring up the idea of being rational.

Rational, realistic, practical…

JoAnne hypothesizes that when we begin to try to think rationally we are making decisions based in fear. She goes on to say that when we think that way we are not living in the present but projecting into the future or making decisions based on the past. It is fear that has us telling ourselves that this or that isn’t meant for us, or is too hard to accomplish or get. I further analyze her hypothesis and its significance for me as I get scootered away.

When I begin to tell myself to be “rational,” I am actually predicting failure for myself. I am assuming the things I would like to happen won’t, so I will have to do this other “rational, practical, inevitable…” thing instead

It is important to be aware of the thinking that holds us back. The next time you make a decision that feels safe, make sure it also feels good. Fear can be paralyzing. We need to choose thoughts and actions that point us in the direction we want to go…make sure that when you think you are being practical that it isn’t taking you away from where you would like to see yourself going or worse, just leaving you frozen in place.