A shattered mirror makes a thousand tiny daggers. Mirrors show us exact reflections. We get an accurate measure of how we physically appear to others. Looking inward, however, is not as easy. It requires time, thought, and honesty. Without these we form assumptions and are unable to accurately evaluate ourselves. Sometimes we are prompted to evaluate from external sources, and sometimes from internal sources. Whatever the cause, it is a necessary step in our betterment.
For many, the seven years of bad luck from breaking a mirror would be much preferred over honestly looking at it’s reflection. We can be comfortable with a bit of bad luck while having the crutch that we are “doing just fine”. Alternatively, self-evaluation can be difficult. Often we believe that we have little to improve, but more commonly, we believe that we can make improvements but have no concrete goals or traits to improve. We will explore some tools that will present us with solutions to this conundrum.
We often look at ourselves through our built in psychological mirror and lie. Honest self-evaluation can hurt, but in this game, there is no gain without pain. Belief and fact are often victims of convenient substitution. We like label our beliefs as facts when it fits our wants or needs. Our inner dialogue is a strange juxtaposition of persuasiveness and gullibility, and we often fall prey to the effects of this dynamic. I once had a friend that continually complained that no one was as optimistic as he was. Without true self-evaluation, we will only sink deeper into the comfortable quicksand of our illusions.
Sometimes we are compelled to evaluation through feedback from others, other times by our own observation. Evaluation set on by interaction with others can hurt and put you on the defense. When on the defense, no one wants to find out why they might be wrong; it’s painful to look inwards and find you’re wrong. With practice, this can be a trigger for self-evaluation. An ideal situation is a constant state of self-evaluation. I am convinced that if we do this, we will understand ourselves better and enjoy ourselves more. How do we apply this?
Let’s try an experiment. Remember the past few social settings you’ve been in. As you interacted, what did you find yourself making excuses for? What topics did you avoid? What characteristics did you hope they would not...