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The Outside Counts, Too

2016/7/25 14:31:45

A couple of years ago, I decided that cycling sounded like a good hobby. I bought a bike and one Saturday morning put on a t-shirt and shorts and lugged my bike out to the meeting place of a local cycling club.

What a surprise I got when I showed up and everyone else there was in full cycling gear ?jersey, bike shorts, shoes, the whole thing. I felt intimidated and nervous. Sure, I knew how to ride a bike, and I was in pretty good shape, but how could I keep up with these people, who obviously knew what they were doing?

I was plenty insecure at first. But I stuck with it, and after a while got the shorts, and the jerseys, and even the special shoes that clip onto the special pedals. I looked like I fit in.

Now, I抦 a fairly strong rider, but I抦 not very fast. It抯 often a struggle to keep up with the group.

But only the group knows that. When I go out for a solo ride, I put on my jersey and shorts and shoes and pedal along at my less-than-breakneck pace. But when I pass people in shorts and t-shirts (and I do!) I know what I look like to them. Like I know what I抦 doing. And they treat me that way, just because that抯 the impression I抦 giving on the outside.

They don抰 know that I抦 a little slower than my friends. They just know I look like a 搑eal?cyclist, so they assume I am one. In their eyes, I am.

We know from our studying that prosperity is largely an inside job. We manifest it on the outside based on what we think on the inside. But the outside counts too. I convince people on the street that I抦 a cyclist based on what I wear. But that抯 only while I抦 cycling. What does my day-to-day appearance tell the universe - and myself ?about who I am?

Ella Wheeler Wilcox writes in 揟he Heart of the New Thought?

No matter if you need your frayed-out garments ?do not keep them. Your thoughts of trouble and poverty have impregnated them so that you will continue to produce the same despondent mind stuff while you wear these garments.

What does wearing those old clothes do to us? It tells the rest of the world that we抮e old-clothes kind of people, not prosperous people. That we抮e stuck in our old situation and not moving on.

Maybe worse, we send ourselves the same message. We hold onto them because we think we can抰 afford anything better. But every time we put them on we remind ourselves that we don抰 truly believe we can do any better. We continually reinforce that message.

Sure, we抮e saving a little. But is our goal to save money, or make more? We can find the balance between being spendthrifts and cheating ourselves. 揚enny-wise and pound-foolish,?the saying goes. What we look like reflects our belief in ourselves. Visual impressions are significant, and not just for their effects on others. We believe what we see in the mirror.

The good news: much of what we see, we control. Take responsibility for the message you send to yourself, not just in words, but in what you allow yourself to see.

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