Seeing another as yourself is the true way to see each and every person you encounter.
This does not mean you see a friend as a “self centered, control-freak” and then in the name of doing the work, take that set of labels and turn them on yourself in some twisted form of a turn around. That’s just self abuse. That’s not what we’re talking about here.
How we see others will always and only be our story about that person – so that means what we see in them will be some aspect of our own story about ourselves. It’s that story we’re after … we’re not looking for more negative qualities about ourselves to disparage (which would only be more story, anyway).
…. If you have a story about a friend – let’s say you see her as a controlling, self-centered person – you can learn to let the resistance you feel when you’re with her be a reminder to practice seeing her as an aspect of yourself. This is the first step.
Then remind yourself that how you see her is your story about her – it may not be true …. But it’s come up for a reason … so find the story and let it reveal the judgments you are holding towards the other. Bring them to consciousness. Hear them. Do you know that they’re absolutely true? What’s your evidence? As you list your “proof”, begin to look for the correlation between your judgments about the other and similar judgments you carry towards yourself for the same sort of things. Find the parallels. How do you carry the same story about yourself?
Through this sort of practice, we become more quickly able to see the essence of the person – to see that in them which resides beneath their story or behavior. Looking past the story we have about them allows us to focus instead on the essential sameness we share with them.