I’m a true believer in the power of positive thinking, as I’ve seen the results of it in my own life. Yet, sometimes I forget this little bit of wisdom, and I need to be reminded.
In general I would say I’m a pretty positive person; I learned years ago that negative thoughts bring on negative events in life. However, I fall a little short on my positive thoughts when it comes to aging and my love life. All to often I look in the mirror in the morning and think “God, I look old and tired.” I pick apart everything I don’t like about my physical self like my crows feet, thinning hair, and aged complexion. The voice inside my head tells me I will never meet a great guy at this age, so maybe I should just give up and accept it. I haven’t enjoyed dating in the past three year; I can’t seem to find anyone I actually enjoy spending time with, and every disappointing date I go on reinforces my negative thoughts about myself.
This morning during my morning coffee with my best friend I was handed a beautiful gift. I had just come back from the bathroom, and I mentioned to her that I looked at myself in the mirror and realized how tired and old I looked. She laughed and said, “tell me about it, I feel that way almost everyday.” This comment made her think of a story one of our patients had shared with her recently, and she was wonderful enough to share it with me.
My friend is a chiropractor, and she has a lovely older gentleman who she sees on a pretty regular basis. Apparently, when he first started coming for treatment, he was a bit overweight and his pain was making him look older than his actual age. However, during their last visit together, something had changed. He had lost weight, and he had a glow about him that took years off his face. “He literally looked ten years younger,” she tells me. She asks him what had changed in his life that was making him look so great. He was so pleased she asked, and he happily gave her his secret.
“I’ve read a lot,” he says, ” and I read a book not too long ago about the power of the brain.” The book was mainly about how you can use your own brain to make positive changes in your life. He came across a tip he really like, and he decided to try it. The book instructed him to find a picture of himself that he really like. It didn’t matter how old he was in the picture, as long as he liked what he saw when he looked at the picture. Once he found the best picture, he was told to see that image of himself everytime he looked in the mirror.
My friend and I both agreed this was a fantastic idea, and we both decided to give it a try. The reflection we see in the mirror is the image our brain accepts. If I decide I look young and vibrant when I look in the mirror then so will my brain. As soon as I got home, I flipped through all my pictures and decided on one of me at my brother’s wedding. I was probably about 27 years old in the picture. What I loved about the picture was my smile. I am standing beside my ex-husband with a the biggest smile that is lighting up my face, my skin is glowing from the happiness I was feeling inside. My eyes were shinning with love and happines, and my body language said – I LOVE LIFE!
The way I was feeling when that picture was taken was written all over my face. If I can change the way I feel inside, I know I will love the image staring back at me in the mirror. I gave it a try this morning, and believe it or not – It worked. I feel great today, not only because of the picture trick, but also because I remember how powerful positive thinking is.
I am so grateful for this reminder today – it happened just when I needed it.