Who is this person I see staring back?
'Who is the girl I see, staring back straight at me..' coos Coco Lee in the feature song of Mulan.
This is what we sometimes wonder looking into a mirror or simply contemplating a reflection off the TV screen clean enough to do so. And if you have not, you should.
As our journey through life gets consumed every second by time and chalked up what we regard as age and experience, we sometimes forget to give ourselves the private time of looking back. Looking back at our journey, in achievements of success and, not or, of failures. And we deserve it.
On a flight back from Sydney, as I prepared my world's largest reclinable bed-seat, I caught a glimpse of a familiar face which inadvertently looked back.
I seriously have not seen ME for a while, although we confront the mirror almost daily, in toilets, in elevators, in the car back-view mirror. These were stares that was for a purpose, not one that is to examine oneself. It is to check a blemish, to shave – for men and some women, to check on traffic before you overtake or reverse, or to conform to let time pass by faster when you examine your clothes and hair in an elevator shiny surface.
How many of us look into the mirror at ourselves to see us, to see our soul, to see the track of experiences that sometimes is so evident through laugh lines or lines resulting from stress. I would submit to you that we seldom, or even never.
The fact is that we should.
We spend time to understand others. How much time do you spend understanding yourself?
We spend time appreciating others' success and achievements. How much time do you spend appreciating your own achievements, may it be closing a big deal, getting to a leadership position before 30, or simply offering a helping hand to an old person crossing the road.
We spend time criticizing others' in their doings, wrong by our judgment, and passing it by our standards. How often do we spend learning from our own mistakes – which we all make more often than we care to admit, in love, in career and to our loved ones.
That in itself is sharing our own journey with who is supposedly the most intimate person to oneself – OURSELF.
The question is WHY do we not do that?
Many does not do it because they are too involved in doing it to show off. We most times do things to impress and please others and in return for an exchange of the 15 seconds awe others have for us.
Many does not self-examine or better, self-access or self-appreciate because we are consumed by the need to care for others.
Many does not give time to themselves as their excuse is either too busy doing things for others towards the claim of selflessness.
Well, as I said before, the difference between human beings and animals are the ability to make excuse for what they want to do.
So, why not spend sometime with yourself.
Even if it is once in a while.
It is better than never.
Spend time to understand yourself for yourself.
You can be naked with your soul.
You can be excessively honest because you are talking to yourself and you will not squeal on yourself. If you do, it is intentional!
You can be the plain you, the glamorous you, the judgmental you, the lying you, the loving you, the cynical and skeptical you.. as long as it is you on YOU!
Learn from it.
You can now decide what you choose to continue.
For good. For bad. And for all the beauty and ugliness the world care to present.
PS: Can also be done without a pillow. Ceiling staring is also useful before one stares at the inside of one's eyelids.