Yesterday, I was a market and walked past a stall and something inside tweaked and just had to go back and buy a sign – I am not normally a big shopper and think that some quotes can be a bit patronising or cliché, but this one just needed to be in my hot little hand. It like this sign had to be taken notice of and I have been pondering it ever since.
And here are some of those musings…
I often witness people in a way that very few people (if any) get to see. In the therapy space its like the suffocating mask that is so tightly glued on in everyday life can be released for a while. This space allows time to acknowledge what is really going on and that truly unconditionally accepts what is going on no matter how glorious, devastating, controversial, life changing, heartbreaking, irrational, glorious or confusing. The energy it takes to hold this mask on can be absolutely exhausting and having a space to take it off for a while, breathe and explore what is happening beneath is invaluable.
It also gets me thinking about how the mask gets there in the first place. The messages we get sent to be a certain way, to uphold a reputation, to not show our vulnerabilities, or to hide our success as others may be uncomfortable. Or maybe its past experiences, protection to get through the day, trying to prove ourselves, pushing through regardless or a sense of isolation that no one would understand anyway. Maybe its just about being able to play certain roles in our life. All of these reasons are valid for why we wear masks but it really got me wondering about whether we are hiding from ourselves in the process.
Authenticity – a word that gets bandied around way too much but came up in my ponderings at its essence is about being true to who you are. It’s not about being perfect, its not about just leading a life full of happiness as struggle is a part of who we are, its about being true to our own values and sense of who we are in all experiences of life. And that’s not always easy. I am not really a person that puts people on pedestals (as that’s shadow material and needs some owning within myself but that’s whole other topic) however the people I do admire are everyday people who allow themselves to be seen regardless of where they are or who they are around. It works on lots of levels and I believe why this quote spoke to me so much is recognising that it can take enormous courage to be seen, to show people the real you and to be comfortable within yourself regardless of your vulnerabilities, your blind spots, your ‘faults’, your strengths, your connections, your success or your power. Its about connection and finding a sense of the real you in everything you do.
Yep, this sign definitely got me reflecting that’s for sure. I would love to hear your thoughts on what this message has for you…
Til we cross paths again, Be You Bravely!
PS I am continuing to do weekly videos answering questions about art therapy, group work and life!
if you want to ask me please feel free to reply with your questions