When It's Time To Look At Ourselves
Not really sure where this blog is gonna go today so bear with me... Lately I've been reading a lot about projection. The kind of projection where we find qualities in others that are most in our own minds. When our minds and hearts are in a secure and confident place, we tend to see the best in others.
"That was an eloquent speech. I really liked the points she made."
"Wow. She really rocked that outfit today!"
Most days, I think most of us reside in that place of insecurity. We have not fully accepted all of who we are, choosing to focus on our weaknesses and rarely acknowledging our strengths. Perhaps this way of thinking is steeped in our past, crumbs of a time when we were told our way of thinking about the world and about ourselves was wrong. Perhaps some of us are still receiving the message that what we do and say are irrelevant. We may feel unworthy. When that happens, our view of the world may look more this... "She did okay with the speech. I think it would have sounded better if she'd said..."
"Did you see what she was wearing? Can you believe she left the house in that?"
If I had said these words in the second scenario, I might be projecting a fear of public speaking. If I believe I could never speak publicly, it's easier for me to criticize somebody who is doing it already, rather than face the idea of my own limitations. Or what I believe to be as limitations.
When I judge what somebody else is wearing, I may be doing it out of my perception that I have no style and would never wear something that might draw attention to me. After all, who am I to warrant that kind of attention?
Does every critique we make come from a place of insecurity? No, I'm quite sure not. Sometimes we have genuine and useful feedback. But I think we have to be more aware of our responses to the actions of others. Too often we hear of high-profile people who made it a point to slam others, all the while taking part in the very behaviors of the population they judged. Often, these judgments can ruin relationships.
Maybe if we take time to go inward and identify those feelings that ignite the judgment we pass onto others, we might instead ignite a world filled with the compassion we all so desperately need.
Once upon a time, there was a man still adjusting to his wife leaving him. He arose every morning to see another man outside his window and in the distance. That man always had a grimace on his face. His shoulders slouched and he never appeared happy. The man adjusting to his wife leaving would always laugh at the sad man. During the day, he'd tell others just how ridiculous the sad man looked.
One morning the man grew curious upon arising from his bed and made his way toward the distant window. He could see a large tag hanging from the corner of the window frame that he'd never noticed before. As he drew closer, he watched the sad man in the window approach him, moving in a way as if to mimic the man's own movements.
He stopped within inches of the window, staring in disbelief as he realized his error.
In front of the window had been placed a large mirror. He stared at his own grimacing reflection as he pulled the tag from the corner of the frame. The mirror was a gift from his wife.