I just finished watching the movie Liar Liar by Jim Carrey for the third or fourth time, but I must say, it had a different spin on it today. The whole idea of lawyers being liars and his son wanting his dad to tell the truth for once in his life time, got me thinking about how we wear disguises by pretending to be who we aren?t and creating an unrealistic world in our minds.
Oscar Wilde states ?Be yourself; because everyone else is already taken.?
So what is a disguise and is it necessary you wear one?
The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines it as a change in appearance or behaviour that?s misleading in order to conceal ones identity or true nature. It prevents you from being authentic.
The post in context;
Wearing a disguise involves:
- Not being true to yourself.
- Living in an unreal bubble (world) created by you.
- Making up so many creative stories about who you are.
- Constructing or imagining a lie you can easily live or partially adapt to.
- Not letting your guard down or giving room for any slip ups.
- Abandoning the basic fundamentals of life such as integrity, honesty……
- Playing the part created in your mind either by acting it out; in this case trying to be the next…..(you know who) or by dressing up for it; ensuring your wardrobe is full of clothes to portray that image.
You can tell I?ve been down this route several times (laugh). While growing up I put myself in a situation where I tried so hard to be liked, but eventually got frustrated because it didn?t yield any result. I later discovered being myself, was the only way forward and that brought some lovely people into my life. François Duc de La Rochefoucauld puts it nicely stating ?We are so accustomed in disguising ourselves to others that in the end we become disguised to ourselves.?
There are so many reasons why you could wear disguises:
- To please yourselves and this works temporarily but fizzles out because you are not just cut out for it.
- To please people
- The fear of conflict.
- The need for acceptance.
- The need for love and recognition.
- The fear of harm and punishment.
- The fear of rejection.
- Unrealistic expectations.
- The need for respect.
- It?s already a habit formed.
- You are seeking happiness.
- You have a low self esteem and poor self confidence.
In the words of Judy Garland, ?Always be a first-rate version of yourself, instead of a second-rate version of somebody else.?
The aim of this post is to slightly alter your way of thinking by suggesting you can be celebrated, respected, honored by simply being yourself (constructively).
Being yourself is celebrating you, as an individual – learning to express yourself and be happy with who you are.
It?s learning to love you, not shielding who you are or altering things about you, in order to fit in.
The benefit of having a list is to identify one or two points which may prove useful in helping you discover who you really are.
In no particular order, here are a few ways to take off your disguise:
Define Who You Are
Your primary goal should be to find out who you are and what makes you tick as a person. It could be your lovely smile, the way or manner in which you talk and listen, academic brilliance, intelligence, domestic abilities……
Think about things you would/wouldn?t like to do; things that bring out the best or worst in you.
I ?m fond of saying this;
What is your name? You are???. (fill in the blank spaces). Your name gives you a unique identity and it distinguishes you from others. Even if you bear a common name, your features such as hair, skin colour, height, eyes??. aren?t the same with others of similar names.
Accept Who You Are
You are a human with feelings, emotions? and is expected to make mistakes at times. Always feel good about who you are (positively), where you are now and display confidence about what to look forward to in the future.
You need to accept your race, heritage, culture, status, gender, make up, creed???. This is a difficult thing to do because you are faced with the reality of being honest with yourself. Some of us would prefer to be born with silver spoons, rich, have different cars, jobs, marry someone else?. The bitter pill is we all can?t be rich and famous.
There are some unique characteristics you possess which are responsible for your success if used constructively.
Show Some Creativity
You are loaded with a lot of creativity, but it can?t be utilized if you don?t know what you are good at. Creativity is a mental process involving the discovery of new ideas and concepts or the new associations of existing ideas or concepts, fueled by the process of either conscious or unconscious insight.
A few ways to boost your creativity:
- Exercise your brain by thinking and brainstorming
- Go for a walk
- Define your obstacles.
- Have a small notebook/pad to write stuff down.
- Listen to music
Every positive or negative event is a learning process in your life. The purpose of every experience gained, is to make you a better person who can confidently face whatever life has to offer.
In order to discover who you are, you must value all kinds of experiences and events you go through.
Believe In Your Dreams
Learn to defend the cause for what you believe in, not swaying around on different ideologies.
Believe that you can achieve your realistic dreams and Stop comparing yourself to others. It?s very important you carve out your identity and style.
Stand Up For Yourself
Learn to say no, when necessary. Stand up for what is right and what you believe in. Be assertive and not afraid of any constructive decisions you?ve made.
Get as much information as you can. Expose yourself to different medias ? read the papers, watch television, listen to the news on the radio, read books, establish a network with different people and have a decent social life.
Ask questions, make discoveries, be challenged, and explore areas of interest. Whatever you do, make sure you GET INFORMED.
Appreciate Who You Are:
Many times you get caught up with work, families, children, circumstances, the economy, your personal achievements/ failures; that no time is taken to appreciate YOU!!
You are always concerned about what to do, what you have/don?t have, your limitations, failures?..
Please stop reading this for a minute, tilt your head backwards, think back in time and begin to appreciate who you are.
There?s absolutely nothing wrong in being goal oriented, caring, determined, driven by success etc. but always remember to give yourself some credit even if nobody does.
Face Your Fears
There are many situations and circumstances that give rise to fear and I am not too sure if they can be avoided but, they can certainly be managed.
Fear could be positive at times, making you approach life cautiously in certain areas, but it could also be a hindrance to progress.
A few ways of facing your fears are:
- Stop running away and be bold.
- Know your fears and find various ways of resolving them.
- Study the pattern/Find out/ Trace when and how they occur.
- Be open and honest about your fears.
- Don?t ignore them
- Break them down into smaller units.
- Be determined to find a resolution.
Recognize The Need For Self Improvement
Learn to accept change. The world is constantly evolving; people/things are constantly changing, so you should always be open to any form of positive improvement.
The body requires rest after stressful bouts of hard work. Once rejuvenated, you are able to think clearly and be composed. This is important in building a healthy level of self esteem.
Once again, the aim of this post is to remind you of simple ways to be yourself by taking off that disguise.
A few questions:
- Are you wearing a disguise?
- Are you comfortable wearing it or do you want to take it off?
I look forward to your comments and suggestions.