One Breath Away

A mindful life with kindness and perspective


It’s so easy to focus on the negative, on what’s not there or not working. But there is so much to work with and build on. There is enough about us that we can emphasise, encourage and be proud of! Let’s focus on that and bring it to the world!

This is for you if your inner critic tends to be excellent at pointing out negative and unpleasant things, but has a million blind spots on the positive spectrum of things. 😛

Note: This is the second part of a two part story. Catch up with the first one here and answer the question “Does that really belong to me?” and learn how to get rid of it, especially when it doesn’t serve but hinder you. And find out how we take the first steps to implement a healthy and sustainable self-image that helps us thrive!

Imagine the following situation

I have already mentioned it in another article: “Have you heard the phrase that you should never compare yourself to others, but only to the version you were a week or six months ago? This usually helps you to look at yourself in a different, kinder, gentle and more loving way. And then you get the most honest and intimate insights into yourself.”

In that previous exercise, we worked from left to right, and now we work from right to left.

It’s like comparing our present to a past version of ourselves. You decide how far back you want to go, 6 months or a year, perhaps a couple of years, whatever feels right. Perhaps it helps to think of yourself at a certain age or in a specific situation.

Ask yourself: What would my past version see, feel, hear when you’d meet? Things like:

  • “I would never have imagined that I could or would do that.”
  • “I can’t believe I am able to …”
  • “I can’t believe this will be possible ..”

Or looking at the exchange from the other side. What would you say to your old self?

  • What are you currently capable of doing compared to let’s say last year’s version?
  • What did you learn or experience and can therefore access today?
  • What are you capable of right now?

Write these things down on the right side and see what comes up. Let me give you a few personal examples.

Current me
..I just talked to a friend about a major topic and life decision and how I feel about it. I was heard and understood and it felt great.
I have a collection of role models that inspire me and encourage me to grow. Some of them are even my friends. Yes, friends can be role models too!
I fulfilled our old dream to learn how to sing and enrolled in an online singing course. Week 4 of ~35, let’s goo! 😛

What about you now? See what you can come up with! It’s not about the number of things you come up with but how you feel about them. And yeah, if you’re in need of inspiration, take a look at the 37 things I love about myself and simply put them on the right side of the column! Perhaps there are a few items on that list that you would have never thought to be proud or happy about.

The advantage of having done the previous exercise

It might irritate you that the left side stays empty. Leave it as it is! The empty space signals the work we did previously as we removed stuff that didn’t belong to us. Now we are able to add new things or become aware of even more positive things!

The old, unaware, negative or heavy things in our backpack took A LOT of room and energy. This might inspire us to fill that empty space with A LOT of positive, kind and supportive things.

Or, maybe even better, finally start to act, to develop and create them!

Let me know how you feel after doing this exercise!

Take-Away: What I have learned from this particular exercise

Personal note: I love this segment, because too often I ask myself why I go through certain things and what it is trying to teach me. Here, I commit by concluding that to me - to realise that there was something to learn, and to deny the mind the chance to confuse and torment me the next time with the same rubbish (“it’s all for nothing, no learnings, no growth, blah blah blah ..”) So - I have learnt the following:

I love this reflection exercise because it’s so uplifting. Yes, this is my reflection, I can keep it short too!