Have you ever taken a look at yourself the way that other’s might look at you? What I mean by this is a good, objective, realistic look. Ask yourself the question “if I met myself, would I like myself?” Okay, I know, for a therapist to talk like this you must be wondering “is Mari going a little bit nuts?” Fair enough, but I am asking you to follow me on this. Close your eyes and really look at yourself objectively. If you met yourself, outside of yourself, would you like yourself? Wow… that was a mouthful! The things you say and the things you do, would that make you a good friend? Would that make you someone that YOU would want to do friendship with?
While this type of thinking may seem strange, I think it is so needed! When I look at myself this way, sometimes I don’t always like what I see. At times, I find myself too critical or too self-focused. Sometimes, I am just too annoying, although mostly I do like my own company (I even have the strange ability to laugh at my own jokes and keep myself entertained!). Many times I find that I am not kind enough to myself and that I need to have more compassion on Mari… on me!
So why is all this “looking at myself” so important? Here are some key thoughts that you may want to consider:
- How can we OFFER love, compassion and kindness to others if we don’t offer it first to ourselves?
- I often find that people who have trouble forgiving, frequently casting judgment, and/or holding onto to even small slights from others, frequently are incredibly hard on themselves. They have not offered themselves mercy and compassion, how can they possibly open up their hearts to offer that to others?
- How can we possible TEACH grace and mercy to our children (or grandchildren, neighbors, friends kids, etc..) if we don’t regularly offer that to ourselves?
- We are being watched for how we live our lives…how we live out our messages more than the messages themselves. “Do what I say, not what I do” just doesn’t fly with kids or with anyone for that matter!
- We need to constantly LEARN about grace, mercy, love, compassion, kindness… and how better to learn than to practice it consistently with ourselves?
So look at yourself realistically, but with deep kindness and compassion! Learn to laugh at yourself and find comfort in your own company. If you don’t necessarily like what you see, well… work on changing it! What I am saying is, set your goals on becoming the kind of friend that YOU would want to hang around with!
Okay, enough of this! Me, myself and I are off to laugh and have coffee together!