Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Take Off Your Mask

Do you know what I mean when I say " Take off your Mask?" You see, we all wear them.
 Everyday we head out the door to face the world, attempting to live up to the expectations of everyone else except our own. We have done this all  our lives. We conformed to become the people our parents thought we should be, our teachers, our peers, partners, and employers, just to fit in. But somehow in the process of 'becoming' all things to everyone else, we abandoned our sense of self. We have either forgotten who we really are, or we are so afraid of reveling ourselves, that we stay hidden behind these masks. If you look in the mirror, do you even recognize yourself anymore?

This is not only emotionally exhausting, but it can also be a causation for illness. I have seen it many times in my practice, when a client comes in with several masks on, pretending  to be someone that they are not. They have surrounded themselves with cars, a home, clothes, jewelry, money, lucrative career but are still unhappy because the one thing that they are missing and can't buy is their identity or sense of self. They feel sick, tired, haven't been happy in years. Something is wrong, they just can't pinpoint it. They are missing who they really are, flaws and all.

Fear of being authentic is huge in my business. People fear being authentic for many reasons,
 but the most common response is because no one would like the 'real' me.
 This is what I hear most often. When I ask them
who the 'real me' is, they have to stop and think because they aren't even sure anymore.
 Recognize that you are fearful, but honor who you are by slowly beginning to shed
 your mask and allow your true self to shine through. It is liberating, and powerful.
 Unfortunately, this means others may not like you now. If that's the
case, then it's time to move on, and gravitate towards those who do. I can't emphasis this
enough, so it bears repeating.  Honor who you are, because if you don't, no one else

I have someone close to me who doesn't like the way she looks, so she turns off the lights when getting
dressed, and never looks in a full length mirror. That way, if she hides from herself,
 no one else will see her either.  Nasty comments about her appearance
 have been made, and she laughs about it, insisting that is is all in fun,
but I know she is hurt by this. Her mask is the jovial
person who doesn't care. The reality is, she is in pain and it shows physically in
the illnesses that she deals with on a daily basis and the medications she takes.
 You see wherever you go, there you are. You can run, but you cannot hide.
So why not embrace the person that you are now, not the person
 that others want you to be, or the person you were in the past, but the person you are now.
 Open your eyes,  look in the mirror and smile. Begin a new relationship the reflection
 that is looking back at you. I can promise you, your spirit will be much happier!

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