Keeping it real

Written by Nichole Dabrowski

When you think about who you are, does this change if you imagine yourself in a different environment? While we ideally want to be ourselves every part of every day, there are times we might live with a mask. I’m not talking about pandemic masks. I’m talking about the masks we wear to cover our true selves in various scenarios. Of course we have parts of ourselves that dominate when we are at work in a professional environment. We might have to adjust how we conduct ourselves around children versus adults. In some ways, the masks we wear might be appropriate and healthy. It’s when these masks become comfortable and we choose to hide behind them all of the time that masking becomes problematic. By wearing a mask, it essentially tells your self that your truth isn’t good enough. But here’s news for you—your truth is good enough, if not essential!

Sometimes we are in pain, whether that be emotional or physical, and this pain is easier

To avoid when we can present as if everything is okay. The second we are questioned about our truth—our sadness, our vulnerable states—the second we might want to run and hide (behind our mask). Vulnerability is what allows us to connect as human beings. It’s the driving force of deep and meaningful relationships. Reflect: how did you feel when you shared your truth (your emotions & feelings) and had positive responses? If you’d like, you can try identifying what your masks look like. For each mask you imagine, go through the prompts to uncover more about them.

  1. What masks do you wear? Give them names.
  2. Describe these masks. Are they always on? Do you only put them on during certain times?
  3. Draw them.
  4. What do you look like without this mask? If you were to take them all off, how would that look? How would you feel? What would you think of yourself?
  5. What does this mean about you?

If you would like to learn more about how to understand and work with your emotions, reach out to Owens & Associates at (847)854-4333 for a free 15-minute consultation.