3 Compelling Reasons Why Mirror Moments Are Essential To Your Growth

by Onyeka Nchege on March 6, 2018


– What I learned about self-reflection from my children –

They say, “If you’re searching for the one person who will change your life, take a look in the mirror.” Recently, I was sitting in the living room when the kids came home from school. Within a matter of seconds, I could sense something was wrong. Maybe it was “father’s intuition,” but I knew something was up; they were uncharacteristically quiet and distant. As it turns out, one of my kids said some hurtful things to the other on the way home from school.

It may seem like par for the course. Siblings fight all the time, right? But what really struck home for me was a single moment of truth that followed, a true mirror moment for me: My daughter turned to me and said, “I hate to say it, but the reason why this happened—the words and the actions involved—is because that’s how you show up sometimes.” Wow. That hit me like a ton of bricks. That really hit home. That, right there, was my #mirrormoment. And it was not an easy pill to swallow.  What she was saying is “we learn from you”.

How was I going to respond to this? How could I possibly grow from this? There are two questions I have learned to ask myself when faced with a situation like this:

  1. What did I love? The courage and love demonstrated by my daughter in the moment. Her commitment to be a truth teller and to hold me accountable is something I am as grateful for as I am proud.
  2. What did I learn? Regardless of what may come, I have to summon the requisite courage from within and stand on what I know to be true. I must always be willing to stand face to face with my truth, looking straight into that mirror on the wall.

That mirror moment with my daughter led me to literally go look in the mirror, eyeball to eyeball (there is nowhere to hide!) and ask myself, “Were you listening?” Not “did you hear?” but “were you listening?” Listening is intentional. It requires effort and focus and commitment to the person on the other end of the conversation.

But why look in the mirror? What was I hoping to gain? The truth is, the mirror is the one where place you can’t hide from the truth. The mirror is always honest. You may not always like what you see, but you can guarantee that what you’re seeing is one hundred percent accurate one hundred percent of the time. What you see is what you get. During your mirror moment, you are likely to come face to face with three inevitable truths:

  • You may not always like what you see
  • You may think more about what YOU see/think than it’s worth. Remember, it’s not about you.
  • You may realize you are blind to the reality of your own reflection.

Your #mirrormoment is about self reflection. Looking in the mirror allows you to reflect on your past in order to grow and move forward.

Your #mirrormoment is also about self encouragement. Looking in the mirror allows you to pump up your “now” so you have what you need to keep moving forward.

And lastly, your #mirrormoment is about inspiration; it’s about self motivation. Looking in the mirror allows you to envision what the future could be to propel you forward.

It’s a powerful experience. And so I leave you with this: What do you do when you know your experience constitutes as your mirror moment?

  1. Wipe the mirror clean and look. Don’t shy away. Remember, there’s no where to hide!
  2. Look often. Consistency is key. Self awareness is so valuable.
  3. Accept the truth and work your way forward.

At the end of the day, I’m happy to report that my mirror moment afforded us the opportunity to have some really intimate dialogue with each other about the value of family and love and respect and care. It may not have been easy, but nothing worth while ever is. All is well, and I truly understand the value of a mirror moment. Because remember, the mirror never lies.

Take Action: When was the last time you had a mirror moment?

Leadership on the Go…..It’s O.N.



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A recent finalist for the 2017 ORBIE CIO of the Year award, Onyeka brings more than 20 years of experience leading teams, developing strategies and building technology solutions. He has also led the creation and integration of technology solutions for a network of retail store franchises and distributors across North and Central America. Onyeka contributes to CIO Review magazine and shares his insights and experience with peers and colleagues via his own blog, onyekanchege.com Before joining Interstate Batteries in 2015, Onyeka led teams at Coca-Cola Bottling Company Consolidated, where he modernized technology practices and powered business processes for daily, on-the-street use. He is a graduate of the J. Mack Robinson College of Business at Georgia State University and currently serves on the EVANTA Dallas CIO Governing Body. If Onyeka were not at Interstate, he’d find another way to combine his three biggest passions: his faith, helping others, and, of course, information technology. Because ultimately, as he puts it, “we can’t help everyone, but everyone can always help someone.”

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

avatar Keith T March 14, 2018 at 11:05 am

Hey Onyeka,
Wise words. I often need to ask myself whose voice am I paying attention to. If it’s my inner voice, I am likely in trouble.Thats what I love about family and close friends, they have a way of keeping you humble and grounded provided you are listening and receptive to their input.

Blessings to you and your family,

Keith

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avatar Onyeka Nchege March 16, 2018 at 10:52 am

Well said Keith! Totally agree with “if it’s my inner voice, I’m likely in trouble”. Family absolutely has a way of keeping me grounded.

Thanks for adding your comments.

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avatar Dena M March 26, 2018 at 12:44 pm

This so true. I especially like the “wipe the mirror clean” first. Over time, our mirrors get dusty and splattered and our reflection may be distorted or skewed by old hurts, fears, challenges, bad habits/influences, etc…So, periodically, we have to wipe it clean and start fresh. Thank God we have the opportunity to do this as often as necessary.

Stay blessed!

Reply

avatar Onyeka Nchege March 30, 2018 at 3:37 pm

Well said Dena! There are so many reasons our reflections can get distorted or skewed. Wipe clean and start fresh. Thanks for adding the comments.

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