Some people feel that the term the power of positive thinking is some out-there, woo-woo, made up hocus-pocus bullsquash.
I’m a firm believer that the power of positive thinking is one of the keys to success.
During a recent hotel stay, I noticed a small mirror that was attached to the bathroom wall. Unlike most other hotels that mounted the mirror in an inconvenient spot, this was mounted near the wall niche for storing your toiletries and was right at eye level. As I passed by, I noticed how clear and crisp the mirror image was, so I decided to use it – rather than the larger main mirror – for my morning routine.
Maybe I was more awake than usual. Or maybe the light coming in through the casement windows was just right. Or maybe there are different qualities of mirrors, and this one was superior. Whatever the case, for the first time, I could see all of my facial features in incredible detail. I saw pores and freckles. I saw a mole I’d never noticed before. And then…I saw them…some indentations in my skin near my eyes. They were faint crow’s feet. Wrinkles. I saw my eyes grow wide, which looked pretty creepy in this magnified format. I tried smiling, and the crow’s feet grew larger and deeper. Since I’m now closer to 50 years of age than 40, it makes sense that I have some wrinkles. I guess I just wasn’t prepared to know that I had them.
And then I became obsessed.
Each time I entered the restroom, I looked in the mirror to see if my crow’s feet had changed in size. I checked each eye from multiple perspectives and directions.
I realized – as I was checking for the fifth time (What can I say? I drink a lot of water!) – that I was doing something that I preach against. I was focused on what I perceived were my flaws, instead of first looking at the positives.
In Chapter 5 of The Inefficiency Assassin, I discuss how important it is to reflect with power, to focus first on your wins before examining everything that you didn’t get done in the day. If we only focus on the negatives, we’ll find it harder and harder to stay motivated to keep trying. Our brains will stay muddled with negatives, and we won’t be able to be as focused or think as clearly.
My mirror obsession was no different. If all I focus on is something that’s a negative in my mind, I’ll only get more and more discouraged. So, I started my next reflection with power. I gave my cheeks two thumbs up for smoothness. My forehead was pimple-free. The whites of my eyes were more white than red. Yay! I took a quick glance at my crow’s feet and decided that they’d be my badge of wisdom. I felt…lighter. There are enough worries in life – ones that are far more critical than a few lines around the eyes. My energy and brain power needs to go to those critical needs, and not toward worrying about wrinkles.
You might perceive flaws with your body, your looks, your performance, your thinking, your income, your car, your….
What flaws do you tend to dwell on?