Mirror Mirror On The Wall
By Resna Marie Brunson, MSC

What do you see when you look in the mirror?  When we look at ourselves in the mirror we usually do not see ourselves out of the same lens as others do when they look at us. People see what is reflected on the outside: our hair, make up, clothes, size, etc.  No matter how much time/effort/finances we spend on our outward appearance, our view of ourselves in the mirror is from what is going on inside of us. If we are  feeling “good” about what is going on around us, we will most likely be pleased with the reflection in the mirror.  However, if we are “not” feeling good about circumstances around us, we may avoid seeing our reflection.  Instead, we walk away and avoid the image in the mirror, hoping if we do not  look it will simply disappear.  Here is the thing, feelings do not evaporate. Instead feelings seem to expand and sometimes become large bodies of water. One body of water/feeling feeds into another and we may find ourselves swimming upstream faster and harder without ever finding the shore or safe place.  Here are a few suggestions to help avoid being swept away by the tide.

Acknowledge feelings/thoughts/emotions. When we are pleased with ourselves/our reflection, we pause and enjoy the image in front of us. On the other hand, when uncomfortable situations arise, we avoid the mirror at all cost and normalize “getting dressed in the dark.” It is helpful to have  a grounding place to sit in the moment and process. 

See imperfection as a positive thing. Are we striving to do our best or is it  our life goal to reach perfection? Because we are constantly changing/evolving our “best” may look different with each season of our lives. When we embrace our imperfect self we are also allowing ourself room to grow and change. 

See each day as a second chance. In a previous post I mentioned this line  from my favorite hymn: morning by morning new mercies I see…” Although negative feelings/thoughts/emotions may not disappear, each new day brings new hopes, new possibilities, new chances, new mercies! In the 1993 film Groundhog Day, Phil, played by Bill Murry, finds himself reliving the same day over and over again. He eventually learns to accept each day as an opportunity to “make himself better.” The negative image we see in the mirror may be the same as yesterday, however, as we take time to process daily we may begin to experience “our strength for each day and hope for our tomorrow.”

Sometimes life just feels too hard. It is difficult to acknowledge feelings inside.  We  rate ourselves according to our imperfections.  We  feel as if we are  experiencing an alternate version of “groundhog day” where instead of “feeling” better,  the days ahead  feel less hopeful? Having someone to help us examine what we see in the mirror may be helpful.

Ready to take the next step?


Resna Marie Brunson, MSC

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