Over the past couple of months travelling around India I have hardly seen myself in a full length mirror, there have been a few days with out even seeing what my face looks like! My experience of this is that it is really liberating not having a clue what you look like. You get up in the morning, put on the clothes you feel drawn to wearing and then for the rest of the day you fully forget what you look like. You feel how you feel inside rather that letting what you see you look like on the outside dictate how you feel.
Sometimes it’s easy to look in a mirror and focus on what you don’t like. I know this is common as for the past 8 years being an image consultant most of the clients I meet do this. I have also toured UK conducting style consultations in shopping centres and when I ask people to tell me one thing they like about themselves they often get stuck. They can of course tell me what they don’t like.
Then you get stuck on what you don’t like and that is all you focus on.
Of course it’s easy when you are travelling to not have to care to much what you look like. Back at home going into work is a different matter. We need to create a good impression and show that we care enough about ourselves and our career to make an effort. However it is easy to get caught up in looking in the mirror way more than we really need to.
We check ourselves out when we go to the toilet, in shop mirrors, in passing windows, in hand mirror and so on. Is this really good for us? It can become an obsession, focusing so much on how we look on the outside and thinking that has something to do with how good a person we are, how we compare to others and how confident we feel in our self.
How we look is not really who we are. Our ego (or mind) gets attached to our body, what shape it is, how thin it is and we start to define ourselves through how we look. But our true Self is what is inside. Happiness, contentment, peace, self confidence all comes from with in. Just not looking in the mirror so much will help to detach from thinking too much about how we look and thinking it makes us who we are.
I am not saying we ditch mirrors altogether, like I said above there are times when we need to create a good impression and also making the most of how we are naturally does help to raise our self confidence. I just think it’s about getting a balance. Dress in a way that you know suits you and then minimize checking a mirror so often. Just try it and see how it feels.
I am going to be out of the country until June 2012, if you have any questions about image at all or would like to book something for when I get back please email me on firstname.lastname@example.org.