How do you see yourself? Is the image you see in photos the same image you see in your mind?

Maybe you picture yourself being ten years younger, or ten pounds lighter, or ten shades less grey.

My friend, Andrea, sent me a photo from last week’s trip to San Diego. We were waiting for a yoga class when she looked at me and said, “The sun is shining down on your face so perfectly.” She grabbed her camera, but I ignored her because the stretch felt soooo good.

She sent me that photo yesterday and my first reaction was, “Wow… I really need to lose a good 20 pounds.”

That is exactly the type of thinking and self-talk I teach people to reject. There is no place in the realm of kindness to say that to others or ourselves.

I looked at the photo again. I began to remember why that stretch had felt so good. My body had just ran 6 miles. Then it went for a long bike ride. Then it went to yoga.

We ask so much of ourselves both mentally and physically, often without pausing to acknowledge our gifts.

I’ll ask again: How do you see yourself? Maybe it’s time to take a new picture. This time, let’s use the filter of gratitude.