While rearranging at home, we had to move a dressing mirror(tall one) outside, where the dogs happened to find it.
The Dachshund is ferocious by nature, while the G. Shepherd is semi-mellow. The difference with which they approached the mirror is a telling lesson in how we perceive others and how they reciprocate to us.
The Dachshund, sighting another dog in the mirror, immediately started growling and then barking. Luckily I was carrying it, else it may have charged the mirror.
On the other hand, the G. Shepherd went to the mirror tail wagging - bumping into it whilst trying to sniff, obviously not expecting the dog in the mirror to move as fast as it was.
Then it struck me: isn't this how we end up viewing others? Unbeknownst to us, people are sizing us up, with little help, based on our doing. Our actions may not seem much to us: a kind gesture here, a swift rebuke there, an innocuous tease - but they may be a lot to others. If one has a frown with an authoritative voice, like the Dachshund, there is no reason for others to speak to us softly or kindly.
While, like the G. Shepherd, smile, and the world smiles with you.