Discover more from Weekend Wisdom - Dan Isaacman
How Do you See Yourself?
Who is the person that you call your self?
The answer to “who you are” will depend on who you ask.
You are probably perceived differently by each person you engage with and meet. Maybe you are a mother, a daughter and a wife. All the people you interact with, see you as a different character based on the angle of the relationship from which they see you.
The most important question of your character description is the concept that we too define ourselves based on our perception.
Who are you in your mind? What is your concept of "me" and your perception of I and my? Do you treat yourself with love, or are you unkind to your mind?
Most people spend a considerable amount of time finding themselves, but why were they lost in the first place?
What would life be like if there were no mirrors?
We would have to puzzle together interpretations and sensory information to craft an image of our appearance.
For some of us, standing in front of a mirror is the closest we come to see ourselves. We recognise the image as me.
When you stare into a mirror, is the portrait image reflected truly “you”, or are “you” the one who is creating that image?
What we look like is not necessarily who we are.
And so endlessly, I loathe that glass that claims it knows my frame yet neglects my frame of mind. It claims me of my looks yet deprives me of my eye. Endlessly I want my mirror. I need to see what they see. I need to see if I'm real.- GodArt
When you stare at yourself in the mirror, you are experiencing a connection between your inner and outer self.
Our mind is creating something of a two-dimensional illusion that appears trapped within the mirror.
Try the exercise of staring in the mirror, deep into your eyes. It can feel confronting, it might make you crack a smile, or it may even become too much to bear.
You might notice that there is a constant change in perception.
All you need to do is move your head to get a completely different perspective of your reflection.
The lighting may change your skin tone; the angle of the mirror or your eyes might distort your features.
What do You See?
Your inner nature is the defining factor that dictates what you see in yourself and what you project outwardly.
Your beliefs and story are reflected outwards to the world, changing the way you perceive yourself and also others.
As such, a melancholy person will decide to see sadness, while a joyful person will choose to see happiness reflected.
You Cannot See Yourself.
Your mental self-image is an allusion of your character and values.
We try to assign static values, in a body, where change is fundamental-Creating a fictional character in our imaginary plot. Clinging to several self-described and prescribed traits, and our associations with material possessions.
Self-reflection is particularly challenging at a young age because events and experiences can stick in our minds and define us for the rest of our lives.
Life feels more impactful because if you are 10, one year is 10% of your entire life.
Young people want to feel good at something, and if they try it for a short time, they often feel discouraged and pass up a hobby or passion that would have suited them well had they only stuck it out.
Admitting defeat too early is even more apparent now that kids can compare themselves to millions of other people using the internet.
They did not see themselves as excellent or proficient, so they give up when they become harshly critical of their "talent." They start to use words like “I can’t” that negatively impact their self-image.
Seeing your progress is one of life's most significant challenges.
We live our day to day life without much context for the past months and years. We struggle to see our growth, especially when we compare ourselves to others, and as a result, we quickly become disheartened and give up.
It leads us to craft a fictional story about ourselves that becomes destructive and harmful.
Charles Cooley described our internal character descriptions by stating "I am not what I think I am, and I am not what you think I am. I am what I think you think I am."
You Create The Self, "My Story"
Most mental health professionals agree that if a person can change their story, they can change their life.
Only you know your path, and how you feel about the decisions, commitments, and outcomes.
You are also the only one who can give your story context.
Our environment and circumstances give us the paint and the canvas, while our decisions, actions and reflections create a picture of who we are.
Building Your Story
You convince yourself, or more specifically, you observe yourself and your actions.
Then it becomes your responsibility to create an interpretation.
You form a perspective and choose to give energy to your chosen perceived thought.
Every choice is monitored consciously or unconsciously before being added or discarded from the story you decide to spin.
You craft the story based on the evidence you conclude, but unfortunately, we often become our greatest critics.
We allow our inner dialogue to say fowl things to ourselves.
We mistreat our minds and bodies because we struggle to see the true beauty of what is inside us and what life and love are capable of because we take ourselves too seriously.
Imagine talking to your best friend using the negative inner dialogue that you use when you talk to yourself. You would quickly lose many friends.
For some reason, we abuse and berate ourselves because we are "Not enough".
So how do we become more conscious about crafting our story and controlling our negative self-talk?
The Solution: Compassionate Thinking
Realise there is no "right" or "wrong" choice.
Forgive yourself and be kind to your mind.
Challenge yourself by doing hard things even when you don't feel like it.
Hold yourself accountable for your actions and your reactions.
Do not hold yourself above or below any other person.
If you can follow the steps above, you can shape your self-image and redefine your story.
"We make our decisions, and then our decisions make us" Frank W.Boreham.
A mirror will not show you who you are.
The mirror will show you a reflection that can reveal harsh truths about your way of thinking and defining your self and the world.
You are the one who sees and creates the mirage; you are not the image itself.
No one can tell you who you are. Others can perceive you, but they cannot define you. The definition of who you are is a decision you will need to make. Only you can write the story of your self-image.
As humans, it is not as important to find yourself as it is to create yourself.
You will be the one to construct your changing story based on the decision you make.
It is your responsibility to maintain your inner-dialogue. The truth is, you would never talk to someone else, the way you engage in self-talk because you are often not kind to your mind.
How will you write the next chapter of your story? How will you practice humility and self-love at the same time?
The more capacity you have to love yourself. The more love you can share with the world.