Episode 008: The House of 1000 Mirrors
The House of 1000 Mirrors
Long ago in small village, far far away, there was a place known as the House of 1000 Mirrors. It was a unique house where the walls, the ceilings, the doors, and even the floors were made of mirrors.
One day, a small happy little dog heard about this place and decided to visit. When he arrived, he bounced happily up the stairs to the entrance of the house. He peeked through the doorway with his ears lifted high and his tail wagging as fast as he could.
To his great surprise, he found himself staring at 1000 other happy little dogs with their ears lifted high and their tails wagging just as fast as hid! He smiled greatly and greeted his new friends with joyous barks! He was answered with 1000 great smiles and 1000 barks that were just as warm and friendly as his. As he left the house, he thought to himself, “ WOW! This is a wonderful place. I will have to come back and visit often!”
In the same village, there was another little dog, who was not as happy as the first one, that decided to visit the House of Mirrors as well. He slowly climbed the stairs leading up to the entrance with his head hung low full of hesitation. As he entered the house, he found himself looking at 1000 unfriendly, sad little dogs staring back at him.
The dog froze in surprise and instinctively bared his teeth and growled at the reflections. He was horrified to witness the 1000 dogs growl back at him and he scurried away in fear. As he left the house, he thought to himself, “Oh goodness that is a terrifyingly horrible place. I will never go back again!”
The Insights and Takeaways
1 story, 2 dogs, and 1000 mirrors. Who would have thought that these three elements would create such a great story? I first heard of this story about 4 months ago at the Public Library when I was still living in Kansas City, Missouri. Amen for libraries, books, and reading! After reading this story, so many thoughts and memories came to mind from my past. I pinpointed countless experiences that I remembered where those around me were either so happy or so upset without realizing the reasoning behind their emotions. I now recognize why.
This story continuously reminds me of two concepts that go hand in hand; One, is that my emotions and feelings inevitably will translate into my perspective and Two, that the world will reflect what I project on to it.
In the story, one dog was happy and joyful when entering the house of mirrors whereas the other dog was sad and gloomy. As they entered, their emotions and feelings were reflected in their own perspectives of the situation that they were in. The first dog’s positive energy was amplified and created a glorious experience whereas the sad dog’s negative energy was compounded creating a nightmare.
I mean, how many times have you gone into a situation in your life feeling bored, angry, or sad and come out feeling the exact opposite? For me, it hasn’t happened too often. I grew up playing violin for 15 years and remember countless times where I absolutely dreaded going to my practice or rehearsal. I would think to myself of all the better more fun things I could do with that time; eating, sleeping, or playing video games. I would rel uctantly get to the practice, despise each moment, and come back home tired and even more upset. Imagine if I went into these practices with a positive outlook; as an opportunity to learn and develop my skills as a musician, to share with the world the beautiful sounds from a violin! Completely different outcome.
The second idea that I reflect on from this story is that the world will project on to me, what I project on to it. I never realized this and still struggle with the idea, but I basically visit the House of 1000 Mirrors every single day. You probably do too! Every face I see, every person I interact with in the world, is essentially a mirror. What they project on to me is simply the reflection of what I project on to them. There was a point in my life where I was sad almost all of the time. It was at its worst in elementary and middle school. I didn’t smile as often as people should, and I was so pessimistic in every aspect of my life. I didn’t think people liked me, I didn’t like going to school, and most detrimental, I didn’t like myself at all. Everything around me was just as negative as I was… Looking back, how could I have expected any different outcome back then? I projected negativity and pessimism and so that’s what the world projected back on to me.
It’s unrealistic to not have any negative emotions in our lives. They are necessary in many situations and sometimes we just need to release it. But I want to take this time to challenge you all. Next time you are feeling down or upset, take the time that you need to process it, but don’t linger in that state forever. Your emotions affect your perspective and those around you.
So I challenge you to choose to positively affect yourself and those around you. Choose to change your perspective next time you are faced with a task that you aren’t excited for. Find the underlying greatness. Find the opportunity. Find the happy little dog within.