Ever watched a child play and felt your heart open, a smile catch you unawares as you see the beauty in their absorption in life, whether it be the ice-cream, their sadness or the kite in the sky (hey, I love how kites have become cool again for a whole new generation!).
And as you observe like this, do they each look beautiful in their different sizes, shapes and colours? Have you ever looked like this at your girlfriends around the table, feeling yourself glow and your heart warm as you take in and take your place amongst the beauty of each of them, knowing something of their journey, their battle-scars, their heart?
Have you ever looked at yourself the same way, in the mirror, taking it all in, seeing and loving the stories behind the extra weight, the strange bend in your nose or the emerging wrinkles?
Now I have spent as much time as the next woman in front of the mirror, sucking in my tummy or taking selfies with the camera held high so I look younger than my years with no double chin. This week a client, who is also a photographer, asked me if I would feel embarrassed if she shot me as I was, in that moment, in the session and I could honestly say “no, not embarrassed”. Kylie went on to explain how she would shoot me to smooth out my muffin tops and disappear the extra chin and yes, I would be grateful for her careful eye, should I be having professional shots taken…
Back on point.
I spent a decade or two managing around a chronic illness, oftentimes watching sadly as the world went by without me, spending days in bed to work up to or recover from an outing into the real world. So yes, now I am so grateful for all my body brings me – the movement through the world and the joyful movement of energy within it. When I’m in touch with this, with life, with my breath and my heart, I look in the mirror and see so much light it warms me, makes me smile and lights me further.
Close your eyes and begin to settle into the rhythm of your breath through your body. Stay with it for at least three breath cycles. Gradually focus on the area in the centre of your chest, breathing in and out of your heart centre. Think about how you touched someone in a good way this week, this year and how someone else’s kindness affected you. Relax, settle, make time for this.
Take stock of your top three character strengths – perhaps your resilience, your creativity, your caring nature, and be in touch with these qualities as you breathe in and out of your heart centre. Should a smile or a laugh creep up on you, let it be! Now slowly open your eyes and look in the mirror.
What do you see? Can you see your inner light shining? See yourself as your loving friends do, the beauty that has nothing to do with lip gloss, hair colour and exercise classes?
Write down what you love most about your natural beauty, how it feels to notice it, what it puts you in touch with. Challenge a friend to do the same. Write to us and tell us about it.
Now finally … WATCH THIS VIDEO … guaranteed to move you. A forensic artist draws a woman described by two different people …
Psychologist and Dream-Catcher.
I listen, reflect and set up experiences for you to move through stress and stuckness into the power, wisdom and vitality of your true self – and move with it, create from it. Gold Coast based, Skype sessions available. Call on 0423 167 376, see more at www.djpsych.com.au or find Deborah Jackson Psychology on Facebook.