Mirror, Mirror

What does a three year old child see when looking in the mirror? “Me!”

  • There is a sense of awe and wonder about the image in the mirror. “That’s me!”
  • It is fascinating to watch the image move and change expressions.
  • There are great conversations held with the child in the mirror.  “Such a grand playmate!”
  • “Aren’t I awesome!”

 

What does a nine year old child see when looking in the mirror? “Not enough.”

A bit of the awe and wonder remains but it is quickly squelched by the ever present feeling of “I am ok, but I am not enough.”

  • I am not smart enough.
  • I am not athletic enough.
  • I am not popular enough.
  • I am not pretty / handsome enough.
  • Everyone is more than I am.

 

What does a teenager see when looking in the mirror? “I don’t matter.”

  • No one cares about me.
  • No one cares if I live or die.
  • No one cares if I show up for class.
  • No one cares to ask me to the prom.
  • No one cares enough about me to give me their time and attention, therefore I must not be worth caring about.

'Gadget,' a long-haired Chihuahua looking in mirror

What does a 21 year old adult see when looking in the mirror?  “I am afraid.”

  • I am afraid of the future.
  • I am afraid of the unknown.
  • I am afraid of making mistakes.
  • I am afraid to fail.
  • I am afraid I may not be good enough to make it – whatever “it” is.

 

What does a 45 year old adult see when looking in the mirror? “Never.”

  • I am never going to get out of debt.
  • I am never going to amount to much.
  • I am never going to get ahead.
  • I am never going to achieve my goals.
  • I am never going to, so I might as well settle for less.

old beagle looking in mirror

What does a 60 year old adult see when looking in the mirror? “Too late.”

  • It is too late to go after my dreams.
  • It is too late to fix my relationships.
  • It is too late to fix my finances.
  • It is too late to take care of my health.
  • I should’a, could’a, would’a.

Remember, the mirror only reflects our beliefs, limiting or otherwise.

Help each other see a better reflection by acting as a mirror for others.  Reflect the beauty, strength, value, and heart of each person you encounter.

Help them see themselves through kind eyes.

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Forging Healthy Relationships

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I think all of you would agree that life is a lot smoother when our key relationships are in good shape. How do we build our relationships and keep them in good shape?I don’t pretend to be an expert, but I am a student of experts on the topic. I have gleaned much from John C. Maxwell, Susan Christy, M. Scott Peck, Oliver DeMille, Orrin Woodward, Chris Brady and a host of other experts.

Personally, I find it helpful to have what I refer to as “cheat sheets” for information I can use on a daily basis. Cheat sheets serve as my “external hard drive”. It is too easy in the chaos of the day to lose focus and slip into reactive behavior. Never a good idea when working with people!

This is one of my favorite “cheat sheets”. It keeps me on track when working with my coworkers and clients.

What personality type is the person I am speaking with?
Am I a source of encouragement or negativity?
Am I connecting with people on a professional level?
Am I focused on listening and understanding others?
Am I building trust right now?
Each of these simple questions serves to remind me of deeper questions to ask myself as I go about my day. They allow me to evaluate myself, identify where I could be doing a better job, and focus on some of what really matters.

I sincerely wish to forge healthy relationships. Unhealthy ones make the day miserable, to say the least!

How do you build good relationships?