Mirror, Mirror on the wall..
The other day I was casually listening to a TED talk while walking in a pretty steep incline on the treadmill, at the gym. I love to keep my mind focused on new and bright ideas while I'm doing physical effort. It helps me not get bored and just quit doing it to find something more entertaining. Anyhow, I wanted to touch the subject they were talking about in the video.
It was about our generation. Yup, about you and me, dear.
It had a very witty title, promising to deliver the answer to one of our most difficult to handle questions most of us are facing day after day:
It was a speech by Emilie Wapnick, that shortly after I've let it truly get to me, I immediately shared it with all of my best friends.
While I was taping the people I was going to send it to, I realised almost everyone close to me was going through the same thing.
The same feeling of being lost. Of having to answer to societies cold hearted question of belonging..
What are you good at? What is your true meaning? What are you bringing to the world?
The only problem is, and it seemes Emily totally agrees, is that we're supposed to have just one single response to all of this.
We should just pick a speciality, a job, a talent, a persona.. then, we should embrace it, learn it and own it.
Nothing wrong with that, no, by any means. That would probabily be the easiest way out, but sometimes, for some people, it isn't that easy.
I am such a case. Emily has a very sweet way of calling it, you'll see shortly when you'll listen to the video.
I am one of those people that have TOO MANY passions, to many reasons to live, too many curiosity to count on my fingers and too many "jobs" I would love to try out.
Paralysis is what happens when you let this overwhelm you.
There's so much flexibility in life, that it's sad to let society tie you down to one particular area of expertise, that will keep you miserable for the rest of your life..
Now, you may wonder what this all has to do with the pictures I posted along. To be honest, I first just set out to take a few shots with a girlfriend, Anca Cheregi, to show off just how different I look with darker hair. Every time I set out to do something like that, I end up feeling shallow when I post it. I start questioning what it is that I am bringing to the world, why wound someone click on my article just to check that out. Seemingly though, people want to see. We are such visual creatures that we find inspiration in images quicker than in anything else we may experience. Now, the truth is that changes like this make you feel reborn somehow. It gives you a clean slate, a fresh start, ground zero kind of mood. You get to reinvent yourself in as fast as a few hours of sitting comfortably at the hair salon. Of course, you don't need to change your look to get a motivation boost, but it is a rather easy way to do it.
Then again, I still felt it wasn't enough, that's why I came on and thought I'd give you a incentive for some thought, and well, Emily says it better than I do!
Be sure to check the video out here.
I feel the question of "what we're good at" and of what "we're supposed to do" with our lives is closely tied to who we feel we are as people.
What it is we believe about ourselves.
How we restrict or minds to think that we're able to do, as well as what we convince ourselves that are our strong suits. I truly believe it is just a matter of perspective.
It is always a different way we see ourselves, than anyone else sees us from the outside.
Heck! We change our mind about ourselves all of the time, so why wouldn't others too? We have to be consistent, though, in one single thing..
Who we want to be! Not to keep stuck on who we think we are.
That changes, we change, others perceptions change, but they change most easily when we guid them on a path. When we guide ourselves by the values that we set for our lives. We should have a goal all of the time and live acordingly. We can't wait to be the people that we would like to be. No. We should just start acting like we already are. Then it will all happen by itself, in no time, it will no longer be a mere wish, rather a fact..
You see, reality isn't as real as it may seem.
What we should do is decide what we want people to see and try to show them precisely that. Then again, it always helps to keep your ears open to opinions from others.
Sometimes you may be more appreciated than you think. Sometimes it's easier for others to see your aura than it is for yourself.
Have you a ever met a very pretty girl that had no idea how pretty she was? I do. All of the time! The same goes to smart people, to interesting folks, to very unique features. I always love to point them out. To tell them. They really should know.
That afternoon, when me and Anca took these pictures, I was upset about the result. Not because of the pictures themselves, nor the light, nor Anca, but because I didn't recognise myself in what I was seeing on the screen.
I couldn't explain what was bothering me, so I took Anca by hand to the big mirror on the wall. I took a glimpse of myself, to see if I was still the same as I remembered, and asked her to shoot my reflection, rather than myself.
She did. These are those pictures she took then.
The thing about us, people, is that we just don't know how we truly are, how we look to others and so forth. All we know about ourselves is that, our reflection. That lonely face intrigued by what it is looking at. A mere image of ones self.
The only problem is that we're only aware of that particular scene. We know the one in the mirror, not the one from the outiside. We know are faces backwards, our features backwards, are sizes just the way it shows us. We have no idea if it is lying, if it real, but we take it as such because that's all we get.
So when someone takes pictures of yourself, they take them by putting their own vision in the process. Their perspective, not yours. Sometimes it's misleading, other times it's disappointing just because it doesn't match up to what we know for sure we look like.
So we shot a most vanity filled photo shooting in the wide mirror. I had Anca see me the way I saw myself and I was breaking free. I was my own persona now, I knew how my body curled, how my features took different moods from just a twitch of the cheeks. I knew how I liked myself, I knew why and I was in control.
That's what I love about these pictures. They are me the way I know myself.
... but then again, we don't have other seeing reflections of us otherwise. On a daily basis, right?
They only see what reality puts out for us, what we let our energy and magic build up around us, but we don't certainly know anything at all.
Isn't it sweet somehow, that the biggest taboo in the world is actually.. you?