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What annoys you?
Something that seems more and more true as I get older is the idea that the things that bother you most in others are ‘mirrors’. If you pay attention, they will reflect back to you a truth about yourself.
This truth can take many forms as it relates to whatever is bothering you. Sometimes it’s a one-to-one relationship: you become frustrated when people are inconsiderate, and the truth is that you have been inconsiderate lately and are feeling guilty about it. Other times it’s an inverse relationship: you’re annoyed by someone’s punctuality, but the truth is that you’re disappointed with your own tendency to be late. Or, perhaps most commonly, the relationship is derivative: you hate being interrupted, and the truth is that it’s been a long time since you’ve felt seen or heard.
The exercise of reflecting (pun intended) on the mirrors in your life and the truths they represent can simultaneously increase self-awareness and improve your relationships with others. That’s a pretty sweet combo.