Over the years, I’ve had what I would consider a complicated relationship with my mirror. She’s there. She’s fabulous. I appreciate her. But like a good cup of coffee or an amazing partner, not all mirrors are created equally (looking at you Nordstrom). And sometimes, they bring out the worst in us and the way we speak to ourselves.
Now I’d love to start today’s post with the promise that we can heal this overnight. Except friends don’t tell lies like that and emotional trauma isn’t ever that simple. I had an AH HA moment last night in an area that I didn’t see coming & it rocked me to my core. The more we dig, the more we notice, the more we create space to heal, the better our chance of coming out of this a step closer towards the best version of ourselves.
Today I’m inviting you to do a little self love check in with your mirror. Get honest. And remember that sometimes life gets in the way of our healing process. We default back into survival mode to deal and that’s okay. But since the mirror is giving you daily feed back on how you speak to yourself about your body, let’s make sometime to do a little self love with it, shall we?
There Is No Such Thing As An Absolute Truth With The Mirror
We all know what it’s like to take a photo. To know that a higher angle makes us look one way vs a lower one. You could shoot a series of photos in a 5 minute span only changing your poses or the angles and things can look beyond different. Your mirror is the same way.
I think for many of us still working through our diet mentality, we’ve gone from judging ourselves by the scale to photos/mirrors. We once again moved our validation outside of ourselves. And here’s the problem: there is no absolute.
The mirrors at Target vs your bedroom vs Nordstrom (with their AWFUL lighting) are completely different. So just like the scales that all seem to be a little off, when we set ourselves up for finding joy in the way we believe we are seeing ourselves, we’re constantly saying: how will I choose to love myself today if I think I look fat? Will this mirror tell me I’m less worthy? Will I walk taller if it makes me look skinnier?
Are we seeing the problem yet?
Write Down What You Say To Yourself When You Look In The Mirror
And maybe you’re past that portion of your healing. You’re in the good space where you can honestly say that you check the mirror to make sure things are hitting your body right. But for the sake of checking in and this exercise, I challenge you to try to be more present the next time you stop at your mirror. And write down the stream of conscious thoughts you have about yourself.
Where are you looking first? And what are you saying to yourself?
CREATE A HABIT OF SPEAKING KIND WORDS
By now I hope ya’ll know I love a good habit! Honestly, healthy habits are what I swear by. And as we continue on the journey of loving ourselves, I think there’s always room for change. Sometimes that shows up in many ways (stay tuned for a post soon on Can You Be Body Positive & Want To Change Your Body?) But at the end of the day, we can always come for a little tune up with how we’re speaking positively to ourselves.
So here is what I like to do and what I’d recommend for anyone else struggling to say nice things daily. Pick you cue. If you’ve read the Power of Habit, you’ll know how you trigger a habit is major. This could be a post it note with or without writing. Put it in the space you first look in your mirror.
And let it be your reminder that you’re going to speak kind words over yourself. If there’s something specific you’re struggling with, write down an affirmation that helps you tell your mind a new story. Honestly, I think we could all do with a little positive love right now so it could be a compliment that makes you smile, a quote, a joke, etc. Just pick a thing that teaches your mind to find joy when you look in the mirror.
TAKE A MIRROR BREAK
But for those of you who maybe need a baby step version of this, start with a small mirror and take a break from the full body situation. If you find that you need a little space from being able to closely examine your body, use the mirror that you apply mascara or something else with. Shrink the radius and pop your post it note there.
WHEN IN DOUBT, PHONE A FRIEND
I will always remember the mirror scene in One Tree Hill. If you’ve seen it, you’ll know what I’m talking about. If not, I’m about to spoil it. Brooke has been attacked and is feeling particularly vulnerable. Those feelings of unworthiness and less than are written very clearly in lip stick on her mirror. Until one day, Peyton finds it and decides to re-write them all to speak life into Brooke.
Sometimes we get so caught up in the doing of things or the ways things aren’t going that we’re laser focused on the bad. And because we’ve let our minds roam these fields for so long it’s ALL we see. But to get out of that space we need help. Here are two suggestions:
One: Phone a friend. Be honest and say hey, I’m really in a bad headspace right now and I’m looking to break my perspective. Could you help me find new words to write on my mirror?
Two: Or if you’re me and sometimes you just need to hear a certain message, I write a letter to myself. I write the things I wish someone would say to me as though I got a letter in the mail from future me and she was passing along some sage advice. It’s really about what works for you.
Wherever you are on your journey, I hope that today’s post helped you. And I hope that you’ll make time to show yourself a little extra love as we combat the rest of decade not so lovingly known as 2020.
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