Men can often hide behind “masks” of masculinity. We hide our authentic self behind a different version of ourself – and we do it for a number of reasons.
- The Mask of Stoicism – We bury our emotions, rather than to properly deal with them.
- The Mask of Bravado – We pretend to be courageous when rather than to actually be brave.
- The Mask of Success – We focus on the outward signs of success, while we neglect the thigns that are more important.
- The Mask of Superiority – We pretend to be smarter, better, stronger, more superior than others – and often belittle others as a way to avoid facing the truth about ourselves.
- The Clown Mask – We self-deprecate, and entertain – going for laughs because laughter is easy approval.
What we need to do – is to be our authentic self. There’s a time and place for each of the things that these masks represent. Not everyone needs to see your deepest emotions – and to learn to trust the right people so that you can be real with what your are feeling, and to be real with yourself about what you are feeling -but also to put in the work to deal with what you are feeling… That’s the right way. It doesnt’ mean EVERYONE needs to see it – but you don’t have to put on a false face.
With Bravado – sure – there’s a place for bravado. Sometimes – when you’re faced with a challenge that requires courage… and you don’t have it – you can drum up that courage – make yourself FEEL brave… and then the real courage is in the actual action step you take. But if you allow that bravado to become a MASK – a cover for your identity…
The same is true for Success – is it wrong to want to succeed? To have a nice house, or a nice car? Or if you HAVE a degree of success, is it wrong to show it? No. But do not allow it to become your identity.
We break out of our masks by:
1. Understanding who we are.
2. Building trusted relationships
3. Being honest
4. Being humble.
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