I love Halloween, the decorations, candy, spooky memes that fill up my social media feed and of course the amazing masks and costumes we get to wear.
Halloween is the one time of year that we are allowed to become someone else, be it a witch, a vampire or a member of the living dead. We have an unwritten permission slip to put on a mask or makeup and transform into whoever we want to be. But let’s be honest;
Halloween isn’t the only time we put on a mask
The increased stress we face every single day to always be the woman the world expects us to be, often leaves us having to put on a mask, to pretend we are that woman, just so that we can cope.
There’s no shortage of reasons for why we find ourselves pretending to be someone else:
- When we need to be confident in meeting or personal situation
- To be the strong woman are friends/family/children need us to be in a crisis
- When your angry or hurt and have no way to express it appropriately
- To be the decision maker in a situation full of uncertainty
- To take control when things aren’t being done
- When we don’t want to let others down, so be the person they need us to be
- To be the dictator when everyone else is paralysed by fear and uncertainty
- To keep going when all we want to do is stop
- To be the rational, practical one when everything gets turned upside down
- When things go wrong, but we need to keep going
- To lead, when no one else will
- When we’re scared but have no one to turn too
- When we feel alone, even in a room full of people
The list goes on and on and If you’re completely honest with yourself, I bet you can think of plenty of times you put on a mask.
I know I can
I used to have a different mask and personality for nearly every situation in my life, so many in fact, that I found the real me getting lost amongst them.
The funny thing is, the times I pretended to be someone else, were in reality, often the times when I’ve never felt more vulnerable and scared. The times when I really need to stand up and be my true self. I’ve no doubt that you know exactly what I’m talking about, that you too have had to use a mask to cope with a situation that made you feel open and raw to judgement, pain and criticism.
So how can you start to remove some of the masks you wear?
The easiest way to stop wearing so many masks is to recognise the times when you’re pretending to be someone else, when you’re not being the real you.
Perhaps it’s being the bitch when you feel criticised or the gossip you indulge in when you feel alone and crave connection, even if it’s at the expense of someone else. It might even be when you’re pretending to be happy, just to avoid the painful emotions that are bubbling away aside of you.
Whenever it is that you find yourself acting out of character, I want you to ask yourself if this mask your wearing, the person you’re pretending to be, is she the woman you want to be? Are her behaviours and actions in line with the values and beliefs that you make you you?
Is this the woman you want the world to see you as?
If the answers no, then put the mask to one side, take a deep breath and make that choice to respond and act in a way that is aligned with the real you.
What mask are you wearing? What's stopping you from being the real you?Click To Tweet
Choose to be the badass woman you were born to be, the one that knows her value and worth, who stands up for what she believes in, even if it scares the shit out of her. Be the woman who doesn’t allow others to dictate who she is, who doesn’t need someone else’s validation, love or approval to be happy. Just be you.
I know it isn’t always easy. That putting on a mask and pretending can temporality stop the pain, it can stop the doubt, fear and uncertainty that sometimes feels like it might consume you. But please believe me when I say, you can do this.
Learn from my mistakes and the mistakes of so many women before me, don’t let the fear of being your badass self-keep you stuck, pretending to be the woman you’re not just to make others happy.
You only have one life and it’s too damn short to be anyone other than the amazing woman I know you really are deep down inside.
Tell me, when will you stop wearing a mask? Let everyone know in the comments below and make that declaration to show the world that the real you is a true badass, one who knows she’s worth more and is ready to start being the real you.
Never stop being you,
PS: Why not share this post and help support other women in your lives to stand up and remove some of the masks that are weighing them down.