THE BLOG

Look at Me! Look at Me!

03/18/2010 05:12 am ET | Updated Nov 17, 2011

Remember being a child? Remember running home or playing in the playground and discovering that you could do something new? "Look at me!" you shouted. "Look at me!" If you look closely at yourself, you may discover you are still doing it. You still want to be seen -- to be seen for what you can do and for how special you can be. Perhaps in your childhood you were not seen, or at least, not enough. Your parents were too stressed and busy. There were too many other children and needs to compete with. Or worse, when you were seen, you were hurt.

No one had the perfect childhood. It is rare to have "the perfect life," whatever that may be. Even in nurturing families, parents get stressed and often are too busy to see with their ears or hear with their eyes. It is rare to get any one's undivided attention as they likely have other things going on in their mind. It is simply reality. The problem is that as we are developing, we are learning about who we are in the larger context of this world. We become visible when we are seen. We become recognized when we are heard. We are learning about the validation of our existence.

As adults, we are therefore still seeking this validation. "Look at me!" we say, but this time it may be silently, as we have been told not to brag or show off. "Validate me!" we whisper under our breath. We seek this validation in a variety of ways -- a pat on the back; a raise; a betrothal of love; applause from a crowd; the person at the reception desk to be pleasant or some other driver to slow down to let you pass. We feel validated by the kindness and attention of others or when life seems to be going our way. We are also very quick to feel invalidated -- by someone who is rude; criticism from a stranger or friend; by the management who laid you off; by the other person who got the award instead of you; by your heart being broken by the one you love. "Look at me!" you may want to scream. "Can't you see me? Can't you see that I am good at what I do and that I am good person who deserves love and prosperity?" And when you feel invalidated, you feel invisible. And so, you either shut down or try harder to be seen. If inherently or unconsciously you believe you are invisible, how do you expect the world or universe to see you?

Your job is to ask yourself why it is so important to prove yourself while at the same time destroying yourself. Why is it so important to be seen for what you know or can prove when you do not see yourself as a living being that must thrive in your existence? Perhaps if you did believe and love yourself more, nurture yourself more, the quality of your work would be even that much more magnificent. Your life would be that much more extraordinary. When you know in your heart that you are visible, seen, heard, valued and loved, you may find that you meet the most extraordinary people and have the most magnificent experiences.

Try this exercise and see what happens: Imagine that you are surrounded by golden rays of light, perhaps from the sun itself. These rays of light are shining directly on you, because you are special. These rays of light are also tickling your heart so that it starts laughing and opening like a flower. As this happens, say these words at least ten times: "I am here. Seen. Heard. Valued. And Loved. And I shine my light like the sun itself." As you repeat these words, you may notice the light that enters your heart begins to shine out, as if you have a sun shining in your heart center. Even if your life doesn't change, this exercise will help you feel better and help you body's biochemistry shift more into balance.