I Met Myself In the Arena (Mirror Work)

Daring Greatly

It takes a village. At least, that’s the self-development community I strive to live within, therapists, mentors, coaches, yogis, peers, healers, learners, seekers. The reasons for the size of the population are another subject. In this post, we’ll deal with this week’s experiences.

Returning from spending spring break with my youngest son, visiting my family in Nevis), the week opened with an appointment with our therapist. Skilled in a variety of methodologies, I connect with her positive psychology model. Working and wading through complex, overlapping and emotional issues with a trusted navigator to arrive at a simple re-framing has been, and continues to be, transformational to me.

Homework assignments help me integrate the information into behavioral change. Often, the tasks are simple. Simple, but not easy, just like yoga (another post!). And, just like yoga, both can be awkward and clumsy. Here’s some homework I’m working on.

First, I’m reminded, again, to journal. Analog, digital, whatever. Just write down, without edit or desire for perfection, what I’m noticing. Essentially, notice what I’m noticing. For someone whose brain is always racing, this is having a surprisingly calming effect, particularly if I can resist the temptation to make any sort of meaning about what I’m noticing. Just notice what I’m noticing and journal it. Got it. Doing it. All good. Yay me.

I want to preface that describing the second task is making me cringe as I type. So many feelings about being vulnerable and sharing the task and why it’s hard for me. It’s almost like I’m daring my self. This brings to mind “Daring Greatly” and all the positive, strong emotions I associate with that phrase, the book, the workshop, the learning. I can breath again, heart rate slows. Using the countdown tip to break resistance, three, two, one, go!

I have to do mirror work. I have to look into a mirror, smile at my self, and say aloud the following four phrases. Oh, and, I have to say my name as well. Here’s the instruction:

  • Smile at myself. Say aloud.
  • I forgive. As in, I forgive you, Chris, for (insert less than healthy behavior or thought pattern here).
  • I am proud. I am proud of you, Chris, for (insert behavior choice or thought redirection here).
  • I commit. I commit to you, Chris, that (insert future intention here).
  • I love. I love you, Chris.

People, I’m confessing to you, I made SUCH a story in my head about how hard, awkward, lame, weird, shamefully selfish this was going to be. Avoided doing it for days. Found so many reasons to be too busy to do this. Can you blame me???

  • I forgive you, Chris, for not focusing on your blog and writing posts, something you advise others to do.

  • I am proud of you, Chris, for writing this post about the mirror work.

  • I commit to you, Chris, to write 3 posts per week. If you seek inspiration, notice what you are noticing. (See what I did there, two birds, one stone.)

  • I love you, Chris.

I’m here to report, I did it.

Want to know what it was like? Sorry, you have to be in the arena with me. You do it, too. Then message me and I’ll share my experience.

Spoiler alert: I’m meeting my self in the mirror daily.