Every Person is Our Mirror

"Once we recognize that the world is a projection of our consciousness, we also recognize that the only way to change the world in a meaningful way is to bring about a shift in our own consciousness. The world is a mirror in every moment, in every situation, in every circumstance and in every relationship. Deepak Chopra"...

We have all heard that people come into our life for a reason. For me, it has been incredibly powerful to understand that I don’t have to search for that reason; everyone in my life is a mirror here to show me myself – here to show me the parts of me I don’t like or am just to afraid to see.

In our coaching work, we spend time learning that in order to be happy and truly fulfilled, we must own every quality we see in the world and in others; even embracing the parts of ourselves we have disowned and projected onto our friends, loved ones and strangers. In this way, we can then recognize that everyone is a gift in our lives, leading us to grow, learn, look inside and ultimately heal ourselves.

Recently I felt the incredible power of this concept and it changed so much about the way I viewed my world. For a long time, one of the most important mirrors in my life has been my ex-husband. Although I am aware that he has been put in my life to show parts of myself, for the longest time I refused to really embrace the gifts and lessons he has been here to teach me. In fact, for years I have easily been able to find his faults – whether I see him as selfish, a jerk, an idiot or a bad parent – I have consistently used him to project the parts of myself I am afraid to look at. In fact, although his faults frustrate me, I have come to rely on these projections as our dynamic: one that keeps me superior and he simply never measures up.

All that changed, however, when one day my ex was thrown a curve ball that found me looking at him with new eyes. Instead of seeing him as the villain in my life story, I suddenly saw him as vulnerable and in need kindness and compassion. And while extending kindness to him initially felt good, I also found myself gripped with a new fear. What if he no longer showed up in my life as a villain? What would that mean about me and where would all my negative projections go if he wasn’t there to hold them?

In that moment, I suddenly realized how responsible I had been in keeping up our long-term dynamic. Although I intellectually understood that this dynamic might be offering me an opportunity to shift, the reality was that I was really attached to the idea that he could own these parts for me! See, if he showed up as an idiot or a bad parent, that meant that I was smart and an awesome parent. I could really focus on all my good and win at the “I am the better parent game.” I could believe in my own superiority because he was the one carrying all those bad parts. It was working for me. I should say it was working for me until suddenly I became aware that I had been hiding behind him. I was ultimately afraid that if he suddenly showed up in a positive way, that it meant that I would no longer look so good.

In that moment of consciousness, I was able to do what Deepak suggests, experience a real shift. I could decide to continue our old patterns and rob myself of real change, or I could recognize deep down what I already knew in my heart – all the things I was calling him, I was too. If he was a bad parent, jerk or an idiot . . .so was I. At the same time, I also realized that I can also be an amazing parent and a kind person without him needing to be negative and so can he.

I always look for ways that the world reflects our partnership with others in carrying forth our message of peace. As this story reflects, our partners in peace may not always come from the most obvious place.

Today, I ask you to look for partners in the relationships you share with others. What part of you can you take back that someone else has been holding? And what will become more available for you to embrace once you do? I look forward to hearing from you on your journey!

Peace and love,