Stand naked in front of a mirror. Do you like what you see?
If you’re like most people, you won’t.
Think about all the things we do to make ourselves seem more than we are. We wear clothes that flatter our bodies, apply make up, style our hair. We drive cars, we own houses and other things.
But when you stand naked in front of a mirror none of that matters. It’s irrelevant.
You’re not your house, your car, your clothes, or your possessions. But are we scared to admit that? Are we scared to stand there, unadorned, and look into the mirror? Are we scared of an honest reflection?
Say you’ve had an argument with a friend. You’re talking to another friend about it and you ask them, “what do you think?” You don’t want honesty. You don’t want them to tell you that you’ve been an idiot. A shallow, selfish, insensitive idiot.
You want them to understand, to sympathise, to relate, to comfort you, to be on your side.
But it’s not what you need.
You need them to call you out on your behaviour. You need them to pinpoint your errors. Else, how will you improve, how will you get better?
In every area of our life, we’re scared of an honest reflection. At work, we want to think we’re doing a good job. At home, we like to think we’re being a good spouse. In our social life, we like to think we’re being a good friend. And we’re afraid to stand naked in front of the mirror because we’re scared we might not like what we see.
But the only way you’ll ever be anything more than you are is when you can stand there, unadorned, naked, exposed, and say “this is what I am”.
The only way you’ll ever elevate yourself above your current situation is by saying, “this is what I am. I accept it. But here’s what I’m going to do about it.”