REMOVING THE MASK
During the early stages of life we are trained to please others. Parents, teachers, friends, eventually bosses and perhaps even spouses. We learn to play by other people's rules and what is acceptable ( and considered "normal") by society. You might say that we are taught to wear a mask over our true selves.
All of these things aren't necessarily wrong, but as maturity comes, many begin to feel the tug of independence upon their heart. The desire to "go your own way" replaces the desire to "fit in" and keeping up appearances becomes much less important.
With all of that in mind, do you sometimes feel that you're not the person the rest of the world seems to think you are? That you're wearing a mask which is portraying someone other than YOU? Do you feel that you're stuck playing that role? There was certainly a time when I felt that way. The question is, how can one break out of that, find their passion and go on to live it? If you begin to search around for answers to that question you'll find responses such as:
- "Live an authentic life!"
- "Be genuine"
- "Live your passion"
- "Do what you love"
- "Align your life with who you really are"
Let me say that all of the above statements are true. But do they truly answer the question "How do I begin" or "Where do I start and what do I do?" I know that when I first began asking those questions I needed more. I mean, I knew that those statements were true, but still had not a clue how to begin the process! I had been living my life in the opposite for so long that I needed help just to get started.
Perhaps the methods and techniques used to begin creating a life lived on your own terms will vary from person to person. That being said, there are still a few that will apply to everyone and I'd like to offer a couple of them here.
"Your vision will become clear only when you look into your heart. Who looks outside, dreams. Who looks inside, awakens." -Carl Jung
Take full responsibility for your life and how it is at this moment. No longer blame others for your situation.
Be still. You must make the time to be free from all distractions and listen to your inner voice. Ask yourself questions like:
"What kind of person do I really want to be?"
"What characteristics do I wish to possess?"
"What is most important to me and why is it important to me?"
Now, because I don't hold all the answers, I'd like to ask for help. If you have been through the process described in this post, if you have broken free and are living life on your own terms and not by the expectations of others, please share in the comments how you got started. I think by sharing your experiences, people will not only benefit from it, but will learn ways in which they can begin their journey to living a life on their own terms.