What you see when you look in the mirror can tell you a lot about yourself.
It’s human nature to pick at the flaws: Our hair is too short or too long, our nose is too big or too little, our teeth are too crooked or too yellow, or we wish we had a more ideal body—one that rivals that of an athlete or a movie star.
That said, some of us have a tendency to be more critical than others. Some of us see flaws that aren’t there—things that we perceive, in our minds, to be visible to others, but that are, in truth, only a reflection of what we feel inside.
It’s those thoughts that can be the most damaging to our self-worth and overall growth potential.
At some point, you have to come to a crossroads about who you are, and who you can be. None of us are destined for perfection, but no one will fault you for trying to be the best version of you that you can—so, go for it.
However, don’t lose perspective in the process. Always remember why you are doing what you’re doing.
If your motivation is to fit a goal that you’ve already realized within yourself, then plug away. There is nothing wrong with self-improvement that’s born of positive self-actualization.
On the flip side, if your goal is set based on external factors in your environment, then you could be setting yourself up for failure. There is nothing “real” about the images you see on a billboard or a television screen. A lot of people, trainers, and money are behind the pretty pictures you see, and setting your goal based solely those images is akin to setting out on a dark path—minus a working flashlight, a map, or a clear sense of direction—you might get there, at some point, but your emotional and psychological compass will be battered and bruised a great deal along the way.
Don’t let your journey towards self-actualization be set using a worldly compass, develop your own compass, set your own pace, and have faith that, at the end of your journey, you will be every bit the person you hoped you could be.