Oscar Wilde said, “Be yourself; everyone else is taken.”
Although it’s a great idea to just be ourself, one of our greatest fears is to show our true selves to the world, for the fear of being exposed and rejected.
So we wear different masks for different situations, from work, friends, family, social media etc. with the aim that we can protect our true self, so we won’t be exposed or rejected.
The fact is whether you live with or without your masks, you will be liked and loathed in equal measures. Therefore to live a life based on these two factors is detrimental if you don’t know and value your own worth. As Maya Angelou wisely said:
“Success is liking yourself, liking what you do, and liking how you do it.”
Feeling wary can protect us in certain situations when we need to be cautious. But when this fear extends into the majority of your life and your constantly switching masks, it’s detrimental as ironically these masks stop us showing our full potential.
Wearing many different masks is exhausting, especially if you’re trying to impress people by not being the authentic you as summarised by F.Brice:
“Let the world know you as you are, not as you think you should be, because sooner or later, if you are posing, you will forget the pose, and then where are you?”
However we do need masks, as there are situations when saying it like it is, and being yourself aren’t appropriate and will get you in trouble.
But if you wear a mask the majority of the time you are subconsciously telling yourself, that your true self needs to be withheld because it’s unworthy. This is a constant negative thought that permeates into your daily thinking and subsequent repeated actions.
If you have these thoughts, challenge them and replace the actions with ones that better serve you.
The fear in reducing the amount of masks we wear is the reaction of other people. But no matter if you wear no masks or ten thousand masks, you will be liked and loathed in equal measures.
Being yourself threatens other people, it prompts them reevaluate their own lives. Often it makes them see that they also have the same choice, but don’t make their insecurities become your problem.
The amount of masks you wear is a personal one, but always be imperfectly you, hold your own place, and live to your own potential with no regrets.