I had a thought, as I do, about image, identity and especially around the subject of this playing a role in my daily attitude to life or living.
When I look in the mirror, the person I see is not who I think I am. When I was heavily depressed I remember often looking in the mirror and wondering who this girl was staring back at me. The girl I believe I am is small, fat, ugly, inadequate, shy, round, depressed, lonely. Basically, the internal image I have of myself is extremely powerful compared to the reflection in the mirror.
Often people say it takes something in the external world to help reflect something within oneself that you don’t normally see. This can be good or bad such as when you fall in love perhaps an aspect of your character appears you didn’t know existed. For me it was just how much love I had in me to give. Once you begin to practice becoming more aware of your internal dialogue that keeps you ‘alive’ you see just how much you are reacting to the outside world. These reactions help shine light on parts of yourself that are often in darkness and therefore this awareness can help a person find a method to heal the misery or even just bring awareness or truth to the matter.
Once I drew myself as a past Natalie, a present Natalie and a future Natalie. All were extremely different pictures. The past reflects the internal image I hold of myself or my identity which is as I explained earlier. The preset one was very hard to paint because I had to be honest and drop the stories that I hold dear to being Natalie. Present Natalie is as the mirror reflects (which isn’t too bad), she’s relaxed, she’s healing, she’s working hard, she’s courageous, she’s open, she’s willing and she’s just Natalie – a human being. Now the future one was interesting and at the time dangerous. I say dangerous because the future Natalie was ‘perfect’ and therefore almost unrealistic and in a way a total rejection of my true present self. The future Natalie would require a new body, a lot of money, new character etc. She was the dream and before I did this exercise I didn’t grasp just how badly I hold onto this futuristic vision of myself which keeps me hopeful but in no way motivated to try and change. Instead it made me resentful that I could never be that way…DANGEROUS.
So how do we find harmony with our true selves? How do we accept who we are or even understand who we truly are?
These questions sparked off my journey into trying to understand more about myself and life. I remember John Butler explain self-love and I thought, yeah great, but HOW? Naturally I thought there must be a solution, a way of doing this right… Now I know it takes so much more than an answer or affirmations and language as we know it. It takes the courage to forgive, it takes the willingness to learn about yourself and the roots of your misery, it takes love, it takes sharing yourself, it takes the guts to let go of what you know and open up to what’s possible…With you on the path will be all of you meaning your identity, your ego, your higher self, your physical self, your eyes, your heart, your past, your language and every aspect of your human survival system.
I just read that as we venture further into understanding the beautiful complexities to living as a human being, of discovering knowledge, the universe, science, spirituality or anything which helps you connect with the BIGGER PICTURE, one discovers unity. However as we remain ignorant, attached to our ‘lower selves’ or physical selves only – all we find is confusion, isolation and a feeling of something missing.
There is so much to learn!
Keep on progressing and I recommend drawing yourself on a piece of paper as a past, present and future figure to see clearly what identities, ideals and concepts you hold onto when you experience life through you. Try to accept everything you discover and see it as a lesson, one step further in your awareness and therefore one step further towards living fully, happily and peacefully – or whatever you want it to be!