Similar to how we adjust the mirrors in our car to capture the specific line of sight for safety, we adjust our point of view to find a safe haven.
As we age, the reflection in the mirror changes and somehow we manage to adjust our perspective to digest this inevitable reality. Some opt for expensive treatments or products. For others, it’s a matter of adopting a different take on it. I don’t look my age…It’s just the lighting. No matter how you slice it, it’s denial. I came to this conclusion after some recent photos of myself. The camera is truth. Only after much practice at the art of editing – iPhone’s most prized feature in my opinion – do I upload and send.
A friend forwarded me one of those comic emails, which was a story about a woman who ran into an old classmate and couldn’t believe how old he looked. She was relieved that she hadn’t aged to the same degree. He didn’t remember her though. When she tried to jog his memory by telling him the school they had in common, he asked her what subject she taught. We just don’t see our own truth.
In financial matters, Suze Orman talks about standing in your own truth. That’s sound advice but in a financial crisis, hard to do. Denial is easier. The same applies for health risk factors such as obesity, smoking and alcoholism. There’s nothing wrong with my diet; it’s the lack of exercise…I don’t have an addiction; I can quit any time. Humanity is highly skilled at shifting perspective so people can keep doing whatever it is they do.
I tried unsuccessfully to find a video clip of an “Everybody Loves Raymond” episode that I recall. When Raymond was struggling through a mid-life crisis, Debra tried to advise him how to cope: Why don’t you do what everyone else does? He replied, What, have an affair? As she applied hand lotion, acknowledging it wouldn’t make her hands any younger, she said, No, denial.
Works for me 🙂