We all have those days when everything seems grey. The sky can be blue, the birds can be singing, but rather than be life affirming, it’s just plain irritating the way the sun makes you squint and that god-awful twittering just hits your eardrums the wrong way.
On those days, people you come across can seem so annoying – noisy, inconsiderate, and if they are smiling or happy – they must be total phoneys! We truly can have moments (or even entire weeks, months and years) where we get all “bah humbug” about life and can begin to wonder if there’s anything beautiful about the world at all.
Recently, I was discussing this very thing with a mentor of mine, and he said that many of us refuse to see the beauty in the world, but underneath, the thing we are refusing to see the beauty in most, is ourselves.
In my professional life, I would say this is very true for many of my clients. In fact, even if they are experienced and confident in their field and themselves, they may still not be fully aware of some element of the way they see the world that is just fricken brilliant. That’s why I love what I do – there’s always room for more surprises, insights, angles and even ‘long in the tooth’ professionals can have more ‘aha!’ moments and newly inspired ideas as they recognize more and more what makes them beautiful and unique in their field.
In work, as in life, it appears so much easier to see the beauty in others than ourselves.
Back to my mentor friend, he said the key to begin seeing the beauty in you, is to start consciously acknowledge the beauty in others. Look at what you admire about people. Their talents, their instincts and insights. Their energy or “vibe”. Their sense of humour, their ways of seeing the world that lights you up or inspires you.
When I asked why seeing the beauty in others will help you see the beauty in you (because it seems like a lot of the time we will see what’s great about other people, but use it to judge ourselves as lacking by comparison) he told me the secret trick:
You can only see the beauty in others when you already be it yourself.
In other words, if you don't see, you can't be it. If you see it, you already have it, you already are it.
How often do you notice the kindness, the generosity, the unique perspectives, and the beauty of others, and assume it’s something you don’t have or can’t be?
What if you started looking at what you admire most in others and instead of using it as a measurement to judge you against, start taking notes? Write down all those things you admire in others – make a big ol’ list! Then after a while, read through it with this new information in mind: if you can see it, it’s because you be it.
Read that list again. And again. That, my friend, is you.
With each blog, I aim to invite your creativity, brilliance and difference to come forward and shine.