Do you love mirrors or hate mirrors?
Do you love what you see when you look in the mirror?
Do you love yourself? Of course you do… but do your thoughts and actions about your acne paint of picture of self love?
Hmmmm, probably not, or least, not all of the time…why? Because it’s hard!
It is hard to look in the mirror and feel love for angry erupting skin. I know that you love yourself. I love myself too, but it wasn’t until my own health coach pointed out how my thoughts, feelings and words were not sending a consistent message of love to the rest of my being. I wasn’t mean to myself, but I wasn’t intentionally loving, either. I wasn’t easy on myself. I wasn’t forgiving toward myself and my acne.
Through my interactions with mirrors, I began to consciously work on changing the unintentionally negative messages I was sending to myself and to the world about my skin. I chose the mirror because it was a breeding ground of negativity for me. Yes, you heard me correctly….I said mirrors. Ok, so who the hell was I interacting with in the mirror….well….myself. Mirrors were my biggest downfall when it came to self confidence and sometimes still are, even without acne.
Just think about it, stick a perfectionist with acne in front of a mirror and what comes out the other side…a person who was addicted to looking in mirrors, but hated what she saw.
There were some mirrors that I could use without spinning into a spiral of unnecessary examination and picking (a big acne no-no that took me time to master – don’t worry I have tips and strategies to avoid picking and speed up healing). Anyway, all of this culminated in feelings of sadness, frustration, and despair as I made my complexion worse in my attempt to ready my skin for the outside world. There were even times when I decided against going somewhere based on an encounter with a mirror.
How sad, for myself. I missed out on opportunities to do things because I didn’t want to go out on certain days because my skin was so unbearable. I pretended it was for another reason, I was tired or whatever, but I was cheating myself from my own true feelings (I was in denial, despite seeing the reality every day).
Look, I went out into the world with acne everyday, like many people do, but some days we’re just too hard. I am not proud of that, but it usually meant that I had more breakouts than my standard and it was just too much for me and my makeup. I may have been more OK with my acne if I felt it was OK to talk about, but I felt VERY alone.
Acne Beautiful get’s it. Acne can be very lonely. Trust me…you are not alone.
Ok, back to the mirrors. I could sit here and name the different mirrors that I hate for days….mirrors in the car…hate em…compact mirrors…hate en…..magnified mirrors – oh god…hate em…department store mirrors…hotel mirrors….hate em. I had to specially pick the mirror for my bedroom and I would choose mirrors that were older and harder to see in so that I could see enough without freaking out every second about my skin. Often, I didn’t even look in the bathroom mirror at all (with its harsh lighting and all). Yes, I controlled lighting this way too. It sounds obsessive, but it helped because I just stopped looking in every damn mirror I came across and, instead, I focused on what was in front of me….I focused on what I was doing or who I was talking and I had fun. I found joy. I momentarily forgot about skin and no one cared, but me.
Look, this did not make looking in mirrors easier, but I realized I had control over the frequency with which I looked as well as when I choose to look. Furthermore, I learned from my beloved health coach, Jenna LaFlame, that I had control over the thoughts that came up when I was looking into a mirror too.
So, I chose to think positive thoughts every time I looked into the mirror. I readied myself with an arsenal of positive thoughts and pushed out the negative by repeating the positive thoughts out loud each time.
Eventually, it became natural to look into the mirror and hear my personal mantra flood my thoughts, “I am beautiful, I am powerful and I have everything that I want.” I don’t know why this became my mantra, but this is what came up for my during those first few crucial weeks of working with mirrors and this mantra is what allowed me to focus on the positive even when I looked in the mirror and felt obsessive thoughts sneaking back in.
Achieving “acne positivity” is a daily practice. Addressing the emotional components of acne is a crucial and ongoing process. SO, what is your relationship with mirrors? Take note of your own thoughts when you look into the mirror. Mirror, mirror, on the way…Acne Beautiful is here for you!
xoxo with love, Morgan