When is the last time you looked at yourself in a mirror? Like really gazed into your eyes till you got lost in yourself? Never? Well you aren’t alone.
I had never really looked at myself in a mirror my entire life. Don’t get me wrong – I have plenty of mirrors that I use for guarding against wardrobe malfunctions, applying minimal makeup and generally making sure that I don’t leave the house looking like a scarecrow.
But I had never really looked at myself. Ogling at my body made me very self-conscious to be honest. When I began to feel the pangs of self-awakening, I instinctively knew that I had to start with a long hard look at myself. Not just a physical look, but a deeper searching of my inner self.
I began my introspection out of pure necessity about four years ago, following an uncontrolled rage incident that made me realize that I was out of control. I had been spinning for so long that I no longer knew what was real and what wasn’t. I had no idea who I was, what I was doing or why I was so angry at the entire world.
I literally isolated myself from everyone, sat in my house and began the long arduous process of facing myself. I asked myself really tough questions and just kept digging deeper with each answer I got, forcing myself to move past the protective layers I had created. I dove deep into my belief systems, trying to establish where they were rooted in my past experiences. I examined my values in detail, refusing to give myself any excuses for anything I found that didn’t appear valid.
I have to say here – this is not an easy process nor is it an overnight or one time process. As I have learnt, it’s something that you have to keep doing continuously over the course of your life. Most people avoid it because it is excruciatingly painful especially the first time you do it.
After the initial layers began to come off, I realized that I needed some help with the process and engaged the services of a life coach to keep me accountable in the process. This is what worked for me, it may be different for you based on your self-discipline and level of commitment.
For this process to work, you have to first be comfortable being with yourself. I literally used to cram activities into every second of my day to ensure that I was never alone with my thoughts. If you are obsessed with “busyness” then it is a likely indicator that you don’t know how to be truly alone and silent with your thoughts. Periods of silence are critical for self-reflection and introspection to commence.
Secondly, you need to ask yourself tough questions and be very honest with the answers. Remember that this process is all about You, so this is not the time to blame others. Examine your role critically in every instance and keep it about You.
It’s important to keep in mind that the most important person in your life is You – therefore be kind and extend grace to yourself. As you progress you will face some harsh, even ugly truths about yourself which will be painful to face. This is the time to love yourself, no matter what you find, so be gracious and forgive yourself and commit to being better for yourself.
As you grow more and more in your self-discovery, you will find yourself becoming almost childlike in your experiences. You will start to experience greater gratitude for simple things like waking up in the morning. Things that you previously took for granted will gradually begin to take on more meaning. You will start to look keenly into your relationships, examining the value that each brings to you.
Most importantly, you will feel yourself drawn to finding what makes you who you are. What is it that drives you, what do you really enjoy doing, what makes you happy, what do you want out of life……In essence, you will start to gravitate towards to a life centered around You.
This is only the beginning of greater things to come, and no, that is not a cliché. I experienced it firsthand, and I still do so every single day. Just remember this, the process is driven by You. It cannot and will not happen unless you initiate it.
If you are wondering where to start, just find a mirror and gaze into it. It’s that simple.
See you on the next post!
If you would like to find out more about how a life coach can help you with this process, simply email me on email@example.com and I will be happy to walk this journey with you.
(Missed the previous post? Read it HERE.)