Tuesday, 6 October 2015

The Benefit of Rear-view Mirrors


I was talking recently to someone about rear-view mirrors. Have you ever stopped to think about the need, value and benefit of rear view mirrors. In the image above, we see a wing / side mirror and though in this picture it is being used to see a reflection, usually wing / side mirrors and rear view mirrors are both crucial for safe driving. If one is driving, an advanced driver or one concerned about safety will be checking the rear view mirror and wing mirrors every 5 - 10 seconds. This does not mean you are ignoring what is in front of you, it means that you are making sure to be aware of what is happening around you at all times. 

What are the situations where this is necessary, or what will you benefit from checking so often?

Let us take a few examples: Firstly, you can see if there is anyone behind you or anyone wanting to pull out and overtake you. If you need to slow down e.g. to maneuver around something in your path, knowing if there is something / someone behind you will help you to adjust your speed effectively so as to prevent any problems. Regularly checking your rear view and side mirrors helps you to know if a car that was behind you might have gone into your blind spot or if there is anything unusual happening. 

If you need to stop, park, do a U-turn or a 3point turn, your mirrors are going to become vital to navigating each of these correctly, effectively and safely. 

Checking your rear view mirror can of course also be a symbol for traveling the path of life. In Ethihcs of our Fathers (Pirkei Avot) we are taught to know from where you are coming and to where you are going to... (Chapter 3:1) The reason for this is that it helps to keep you humble, to focus your path in life and to protect you from sin. Let us look at this idea a little more.

If you have a goal or dream or business you are working on or towards, it is recommended to sit down regularly to reflect on where you have come from, what you have achieved, what you might need to adjust or alter and how you are doing compared to where you aim to get to. Did the events of the past hour, few hours, day, week, month, year etc help you to come closer to your goal or did they cause an issue that has taken you away from your goal.

Just as a safe driver has to constantly be checking his / her mirrors, so too, anyone who wishes to be successful in life should be constantly reflecting on where they have come from, what they have accomplished, been through, people they have met, events that have transpired etc to help them to focus their efforts effectively. Without regularly reflecting in the appropriate manner, a person can end up either repeating the same mistakes repeatedly without realizing where the error is, or waste time, resources etc. Life is about growth, and knowing where and how you are growing, developing and achieving is dependent on whether you are measuring your efforts correctly. Just as a parent can not know how much a child is developing and whether this development is normal and healthy or requires assistance to improve unless they keep a record of significant milestones, so too, a person can not know how they are progressing unless they spend time keeping a record and regularly checking that progress. Part of this analysis requires reflecting on where they have come from and where they are going to. If we are really dedicated to be successful, then the rest of the teaching of Pirkei Avot is important, namely to remember that we will all have to give an accounting to our Creator. This helps us to stay focused on what is important in life and on whether our goals are in keeping with His goals. 

What are your thoughts on the benefits of reflecting as an opportunity to re-focus effectively and to navigate your path in life safely? We'd love to hear your ideas.

If you are in Israel and require assistance in setting goals for the coming year or in adjusting your goals effectively or reflecting appropriately, do be in touch for an appointment.

This post is prepared for you by 
Occupational Therapist, Healing Facilitator
Kallah Teacher
Infant Massage Instructor
Artist, Author and Photographer





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