Keep your eyes on your own lane

Have you ever wondered, why mirrors were created? In various settings I like to watch how people react when they come across a mirror. Some look into it making a 'selfie pouty lips' look while adjusting their hair and angle of their face. Others pretend like they don't notice a mirror is even there. Others take a quick glance and then look away as if they're ashamed or disgusted by what they see.


What do you do?


As a health and fitness professional, I constantly hear and see people tearing their bodies apart as if it's supposed to look a certain way because so and so looks like 'that'. It breaks my heart to hear people brutally attack the gift they have been given, a physical body to house and learn how to care for. While so many struggle with acne, weight gain, weight loss, thinning hair, numerous freckles, crooked teeth, lopsided eyes or ears, etc, we all have something that we think needs to change. No matter what others tell us, we will always compare our worst features with someone else's best. It's simply a terrible bear trap of the sorts. We will never get out of it unless we change our mindset around our looks.


"Appreciate your bodies for what they can do, as opposed to what they look like."


"Strive to become the best version of yourself, not like someone else!"


I get to share a personal experience that will sound vain and trite, but it's my story and I don't care how you judge me for telling it. I know that it will impact someone positively to make a change in their thoughts about their image.



I have always loved the color of my hair. Many compliments from others does remind me that I have beautiful 'virgin' hair that has been untouched from coloring and other chemical, except failed attempts at perms. I have struggled with the texture of my hair. While I know lots of people wish they had straight hair, I wish that I had fuller hair. After thinking about it and looking into it, I decided last year to get hair extensions. I felt so vain walking in asking for extensions, but I didn't care! When I left, I felt like a million dollars, and how much I had to pay for them didn't seem too far away from that price either. sheesh!


Anyways, fast forward to us getting ready to move to Arizona and I wasn't feeling confident having my extensions still in. For one, I would have to find a new hair stylist and I was worried they wouldn't know how to do it the same way. For two, I don't know I even want them in the HOTTTTTTTT summers, which by the way, I don't do hot very well. So I had them removed.


The first few days were great. I had a positive attitude. I noticed them missing and my hair looking different but I really didn't think much about it. Then one day, I spent way too much time in front of the mirror and thought "wow, you look like an old lady with your thin, straight hair." I couldn't believe I was ripping my beautiful hair apart because it was different, rather it was the same as I lived with the past 34 years. I had experienced the difference with my 'thick' hair and I was now tearing apart my own.


While this might sound like a weird example to relate to comparing ourselves to others, I was doing the same thing by spending too much time in front of the mirror picking at the things I didn't like.


YOU WILL ALWAYS FIND SOMETHING YOU DON'T LIKE. STOP LOOKING!


This isn't to say, 'smash all the mirrors in your existence'. For me, it means to look with grace and appreciate what my body can do instead of what it looks like. I DO have hair and that's more than some women. I do have a smile that can shine. I do have a body that can move freely without pain and limitations. That's something to smile about!



Staying in my own lane reminds me that comparing myself to me is all I can ever do. While I might reconsider getting my extensions back in to help me feel better, it has to be about 'feeling' instead of looks. Until I master that, the hair will stay in a baggie until I'm ready!



DIANA SMITHSON

STRONGER TODAY HEALTH

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