Image is everything

Real life is messy. The real people are messy. With the real people (is there any other kind?) there's pee, poo, blood, sweat and tears. I am not saying it's all that but you'll get me in a little bit...

I was scrolling down Instagram and looking at these beautiful pictures. Most days I enjoy and get inspired by pretty images that have a message to share. But this morning my daughter had snot running down her nose, poor thing, we were eating porridge and the kitchen started to look like something exploded there. And in the reality created by IG on my phone, I saw perfect people on their holiday, I saw perky selfies, delicious wine, lovely buildings, good food, pretty flowers...etc. And I felt irritated. It's not that I wouldn't understand with my logic brain that these are just people posting at their best and trying to project a certain type of image. Hell that's what we all do! But still looking at these pictures made me feel less good about my current situation with the snotty nose and stuff. Why was I feeling irritable and hostile?

The reason is simple. We compare. Some parts of us are darker, and they use comparison to our peers as a measurement of success. And when this part of me defined that a snotty nose and messy kitchen is less than a holiday someone is having in Paris, the darker part gets upset and feels bad.

"The power of images and things around us can not be disputed. What we surround us with, is important."

It can lift us up or press us down. My teacher/mentor Jeannine Yoder talks a lot about her history and the voyage she went through becoming "the coaches coach". She deliberately started to surround herself with amazing coaches that she looked up to. She started to create the life she dreamt of. Now, she was sure that her message was strong enough and that she was strong enough to get there. I bet that most of the days her photo feed was filled with other coaches success pictures that lifted her up and made her work even harder to get there. But most likely she also had days that she felt a ping of jealousy inside. And that is completely ok, as we are people with light and dark inside of us.

What do you surround yourself with? What images and words fill your nerve centers through out the day?

Let's take overweight and body image as an example. Emotional eating expert Isabel Foxen Duke says that the ONLY scientifically proven method on feeling better about your body is to look at pictures of the same size or bigger than you are. And now we get right to the point about knowing and feeling.

"These images get right down to all parts of your brain. Emotional, logical and deep lizard brain. They affect you and the way you feel even if you don't want them to and even if "you know better"."

So, image is everything. We censor also what our kids see! Why don't we give ourselves a break too. For the sake of your wellfeeling, why not stop sometimes and put some conscious thought in what you surround yourself with.

With love and devotion


Renja is a love and transformation coach who inspires women to live lives true to themselves. Her strengths lie in listening and problem solving. Her clients describe her with words like: open, warm, firm, dedicated and creative. She is the founder of Ahaa Helsinki, that aims to bring down to earth coaching available for everyone. She believes in making decisions, creating visions and taking action. She absolutely loves what she does, and she is always open for women who are willing and committed to create better lives for themselves.

Renja has a master's degree in Economics and completed the Mentor Masterclass Life coach training program.

Renja writes two blogs: one in english here. And one in Finnish here.

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