Sunday, June 6, 2010

Mirror Self-Awareness - Self image, Self talk and Self esteeming

The Guy in the Glass
When you get what you want in your struggle for pelf,
And the world makes you King for a day,
Then go to the mirror and look at yourself,
And see what that guy has to say.

For it isn't your Father, or Mother, or Wife,
Who judgement upon you must pass.
The feller whose verdict counts most in your life
Is the guy staring back from the glass.

He's the feller to please, never mind all the rest,
For he's with you clear up to the end,
And you've passed your most dangerous, difficult test
If the guy in the glass is your friend.

You may be like Jack Horner and "chisel" a plum,
And think you're a wonderful guy,
But the man in the glass says you're only a bum
If you can't look him straight in the eye.

You can fool the whole world down the pathway of years,
And get pats on the back as you pass,
But your final reward will be heartaches and tears
If you've cheated the guy in the glass.

The Guy in the Glass by Dale Wimbrow, 1934

Believing in yourself

Self-believing and self-esteeming are such vital and life enhancing skills and unconscious competencies that I think it's definitely worthwhile exploring them in today's post and sharing with you a powerful technique, backed up by neuro-science, for how to do greater self-esteeming.

In NLP, we know that 'self-belief' and 'self-esteem' are not 'things' that you have... those words are nominalisations (disguised verbs) for processes and skills that you do! You don't have self-esteem, instead you do self-esteeming. And the processes of self-esteeming and positive self-imaging (which are linked) have a structure and can be learned and improved.

The first thing to know is that the more you do positive self-believing and self-esteeming, the easier and more streamlined and automatic the process becomes. You are re-patterning your heart, gut and head brains.

At first, only your head brain gets it, but over time the heart and gut brains come into certainty and alignment with your new inner knowing, and when you feel it deep in your heart and gut, you know you'll be able to do great self-esteeming for the rest of your life, effortlessly. In esoteric traditions this is called 'centering yourself'.

Mirror Self-Awareness - the power of the mirror

Research in the neuro-sciences has shown that the process of self-awareness is mediated by the pre-frontal lobes in your head brain, and that looking at your self in a mirror and talking and reflecting on your self increases activity in the pre-frontal lobes. Negative emotionality on the other hand is mediated by the limbic system and the amygdalae, which are much more primitive structures of the brain closely aligned with autonomic fight and flight responses.

So, by looking at yourself in a mirror and reflecting positively out loud about your self and your positive outcomes and goals, you cause your brain to switch into much more positive and creative pre-frontal activity. And in doing this you also interrupt any negative or limiting emoting patterns. As you do this, you also send powerful messages to the heart and gut brains, and bring your autonomic nervous system into coherence, harmony and balance.

In addition, when articulating out loud about positive emotional aspects of your self, it is virtually impossible to at the same time do negative internal dialogue or negative self-talk. So this technique guarantees you are pattern-interrupting any negative or limiting patterns of selfing.

There are many components to the connected skills of high self-esteeming, positive self-imaging and supportive self-talking, and we can't cover them all in one blog post. However, the technique that follows is so incredibly simple yet amazingly powerful, that as you do it, you'll be positively surprised with the results. The key is to do it repeatedly over a number of weeks to build an unconscious part (an unconscious competency) that will continue to do the positive self-imaging and self-esteeming automatically and streamlined outside of conscious awareness.

Doing this exercise consciously for (say) 21 days is like installing a new piece of software in your brain(s). As you put in the effort and work upfront, you reap the life enhancing rewards for the days and years to come. And the results echo and reverberate into the relationships and patterns of your life.

Interrupt any old un-supportive patterns in your life by:
  1. Stand in front of a mirror and look yourself in the eyes.
  2. With passion, positivity and conviction say positive things about your self, your life, your goals and outcomes out loud to your self.
  3. Each day, as part of your morning and nightly routine, develop a habit of looking at yourself in the mirror, repeating the following self-affirming statements –
  • I give myself permission to love and approve of myself
  • I deserve to take care of myself, I do take care of myself
  • It is okay to love and accept myself
  • It is okay to think well of myself
  • I am worthwhile
  • I am valuable
  • I accept and love myself
  • I do the best I can with my current awareness
  • I am courageous and accept responsibility for my thoughts, actions and feelings
  • I own my strengths
  • (Your Name) you are capable of learning
  • (Your Name) you deserve to achieve your outcomes
  • (Your Name) you can grow and increase your awareness, skills and strengths
  • I accept where I am now and enjoy the process of achieving my outcomes

Create and repeat your own positive and encouraging scripts. Remember to include your strengths and positive character traits. Look yourself in the eyes, deeply, as you say these heartfelt statements and really feel their truth in your mind, your heart and your gut.

And remember:

For it isn't your Father, or Mother, or Wife,
Who judgement upon you must pass.
The feller whose verdict counts most in your life
Is the guy staring back from the glass.

life enhancing thoughts,


  1. Grant, great post about a most important topic! The lack of self-esteem, self-worth, positive self-image is at the root of all our problems. One cannot have a truly healthy relationship with another until he has developed a healthy relationship with himself.

  2. Thanks Jean, you are so right! You have to do loving of your self in order to do the skills of loving others. As above, so below... As within, so without...

    smiles, Grant

  3. Hi Grant

    Just read this - fantastic!!!!



  4. Thanks Grant! :)

    This is great stuff! I love Dale Wimbrow's poem, and your insight as usual is very helpful.

    I look forward to your next blog and in the meantime will put this information into practise.

    ~ Catherine.

  5. This is great! When you self aware, it automatically solves almost all spheres perceptions and problem. what an informative article! thanks Grant.

  6. Thank you so much Matt, Catherine and Zabili for your kind and thoughtful comments.

    The technique is deceptively simple and very powerful. I am very interested to hear your feedback once you've been using it for a few weeks. Let me know how successful it has been for you.

    smiles, Grant


Share your thoughts and comments...