Who Are You Spending Time With This Week?

Posted May 20, 2013 by Monica O'Connell in Life After Five


By now you’ve probably heard the catchy Justin Timberlake song “Mirrors” (Which I think sounds oddly like ‘Cry me a River’ but Justin isn’t asking me) and the premise of the song is “It’s like you’re a mirror, a mirror looking back at me.” It’s about the idea of the reflection we receive when we’re in relationships.  The contents of the song are romantic and while that’s certainly one person in our circle of people, I want to expand my conversation to include the people with whom we choose to spend the most time and how they reflect us.

Have you ever been to a fun house at a carnival? Inside there are tons of mirrors.  Some of them make us look taller, some shorter, some blur our faces or stretch them out or squish them up.  This is also what’s happening when you’re looking for your reflection in unintentionally chosen people.  These can be people who are naturally around in your life, like your sister or your friend who has been around for ages or that inspirational boss.  I’m not saying they’re not amazing.  They totally could be.  And they might not be reflecting the true you.


We talked about mindset last week.  I hope through examination you started identifying that like most career girls, yours is a growth mindset. Are you spending time with people who are in the fixed mindset? As you’re talking about your risks, learning and your great revolutionizing ideas, what people in the fixed mindset are reflecting is usually fear.  Have you been talking about your fitness goals with people who are really struggling with their own level of fitness?  Again what they might be reflecting is fear.

Be mindful.  Choose your relationships intentionally.  Choose your conversations intentionally.  As you begin to do this, you start to see yourself clearly.  Instead of seeing someone else’s fear in your reflection and making it yours, you begin to see your own fear.  Can you feel the difference? It’s so different.  It feels distinctly different.  You can be with your fear.  You can take action with your fear.

You start to see yourself in people who are self-aware.  You start to see yourself in people who take action. You start to see yourself in people who exude kindness and act with kindness.

Who are you spending time with this week? Choose wisely.

About the Author

Monica O'Connell

Monica O’Connell is a Licensed Marriage and Family therapist in Minneapolis, Minnesota. In her practice, she spends her career cheering on “Career Girls” as they learn how to get the most out of life. Monica works with arguably some of the most successful, intelligent, inspiring women in the Twin Cities who tackle self-discovery, career success, and what’s getting in the way of their true desires. She shares her favorite moments as those “best described not by words but by the stomach aching, face soreness that comes from spending an entire day laughing with loved ones.”