A discovery my sisters and I made with the dog I grew up with was to bring her into the camper while we packed for a trip to see herself in the mirror. Having no idea what she looked like, as soon as she saw herself, she would bolt her 100 pounds of protective self outside to chase away the ‘other dog’. With no other dog in sight, she ran back into the camper only to find the other dog in the mirror again and head back out to clear her territory.

One of the uniquenesses of being human, at least as far as we know, is our ability to observe ourselves, to be aware of our own awareness and where we’re investing it. We can deliberately notice our behavior, habits, thought patterns, reactions, and perspectives before there is a consequence from our outside world to make us re-evaluate and re-direct. And, we can use life’s mirrors of relationship and experiences as a reflection to help us choose how we shape ourselves.

Sometimes we chase what we see as ‘the other’ only to discover that it is us, a part of our greatness we haven’t seen before. And sometimes we discover the reflection belongs to others and was never ours to carry.

The other day a client eloquently described her frustration with an area of life and business she is “still” struggling with. I sat in awe and celebration at the shift she hadn’t yet realized she’d made, that had taken place in her since our last call. Though some of the details sounded similar, “she” was no longer in the picture of her frustration, but completely observing it, and really just the fumes that remained. She was in a completely new place of power to transform and be on the intentional, creative side of a new experience.

We can ask in any moment, what’s my purpose for being devoted to this, or them, or this value, or that dream? We can transform the thought, words, and emotions we devote to a way of life and choose an even better investment.

Life will support wherever we place our investments and devotion with the chaos, apathy, or confusion it takes to wake us up or the peace, connectedness, and exhilaration it takes to say, yeah, like that.

~Shelley Hawkins

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