Chris Markiewicz's Blog
Every Monday – thoughts, observations and ideas that hold up a mirror to who & how we are

Mirror, mirror on the wall…..

What was the first thing you did when you got up this morning? Chances are that it will have involved you going to the bathroom and looking in the mirror.

 And what did you see? You may think that the answer to that question were pretty obvious. Perhaps a fairer way of putting it would be: how did you interpret what you saw?

 Did you look in the glass and say words to the effect “Oh dear, what a right old mess I am, what a state!” (or similar), or did you declare to yourself  “ Look at me, what a flippin’ miracle!!”

 You may well be laughing right now at the very notion of saying the latter. You may even be thinking, Chris is taking us off to the weirdo land of happy clappy, evangelical pop psychology and is going to prattle on about positive thinking and its amazing effects.

 Well you’re partly right. However, stick with me while I take a logical approach to this.

 We have all experienced childbirth. In other words we were all born – unless you are a celestial being descended onto this planet by some other means.  Now, I think there would be few people who would disagree with the fact that childbirth is a miracle. It can be painful, messy, even traumatic at times but nonetheless, still a miracle.

 That tiny being that issued forth from the womb is a miracle and each and every one of us started there.

 That having been established, my next question has to be: When do we therefore stop being that miracle we once were? At age one, or four, or seven or older? When, precisely is it that the miracle we used to be morphs into something else? Or does it?

 I suggest that every one of us is still a miracle, whether we are 21 or 101. We simply forget to remind ourselves of that fact.

 Now, I am NOT suggesting that you overtly announce to the world your re-discovered status of  miraclehood. I don’t think that declaring it at a client meeting or networking event would necessarily create the right first impression. Similarly, putting it on your CV or website is most likely to be a step too far. However, quietly reminding yourself in those first few moments of the day as you look in the mirror could make all  the difference – it would probably feel awkward at first as you may, after all be changing a very longstanding habit.

 I’m referring here to self acknowledgement. We revert far too often to self deprecation or even can go as far as self loathing. Yet, we can desire, even crave acknowledgement or appreciation from others be they our nearest and dearest, clients, colleagues and so on. There’s quite an irony or even a perverse arrogance at play there.

 This can then reflect in how we engage with those around us and how they respond. For example, are you one of those people who declares “ it’s only me” when you get through to someone on the ‘phone? When you make a business prospecting call do you plaintively ask for the person by saying “I wonder if I could possibly speak to Mr Neverthere please?”. The disempowering language will help ensure that he’ll never be there when you call. How we put ourselves out into the world will reflected back. Whenever someone calls me and says “it’s only me”, I hang up. Usually they call back and ask me why I did it. I simply challenge: “If you think so little of yourself, why should I give you my valuable time?” To be fair, I am joking – I don’t go as far as that, although I usually feed back to them that they are doing it and what the consequences can be.

 Just yesterday I heard a snippet of an interview with the 70’s singer Gilbert O’Sullivan. He said that whenever he took a new song to his record company he would say “This is a great song, have a listen”. He was at pains to point out that he phrased it that way as opposed to “What do you think of this song?”. The approach and language demonstrate to me that he was acknowledging himself and his work and, that would encourage a more positive response from the other party.

 Knowing, deep down inside that you are a miracle has definite positive, practical outcomes. By the way,  simply gushing out positive language from a more wobbly foundation is unlikely to have the same power – it will lack integrity.

 It is, of course Valentine’s day today. You may or may not have received a card or ten. Whether or not you did, those few seconds of gazing in the mirror can be the best opportunity to send yourself some loving thoughts wrapped up in the uttered reminder “Look at me – what a flippin’ miracle!!”.

 Now, you may think it’s too late to do it today as you’re already up and about (unless you’re furtively reading this under the covers). However, when you next go the the loo, take a look in the mirror and make your declaration – in fact, you can do it every time you “go”. it could make all the difference to your day.

 Meanwhile, from one miracle to another I’ll wish you a joyful week ahead!


2 Responses to “Mirror, mirror on the wall…..”

  1. Thank Chris (miracle)
    I think you have got it spot on; just to be reminded that we are all special is a bonus this Monday morning.
    Have a great week.

  2. I am definitely the wrong person to read this. Every morning I look at the mirror and marvel how my complexion is always better in the morning, my hair is all fluffed up and framing my face and it still hasn’t settled into its usual flat limp look. Its as the day progresses that things start going downhill! 🙂

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