How many times have you heard yourself repeating a story about something that happened to you, or that you learned about yourself as a child, or that some parent or teacher convinced you was true and, yet, inside, there was a niggling doubt that that story is still true about you today?
Or maybe you keep telling that story without even realizing that it belongs to the past and no longer holds any truth for the you who is showing up in your life today?
It is so easy to ‘story ourselves’ into our victimhood and we hide behind our stories until it becomes difficult to find the real person behind the mask of story.
Years ago (okay, decades ago) I sold cosmetics at home parties part time (yes, your guess is right about which one!) and I had a woman attend her neighbor’s party to try out the new cosmetics. She came in wearing orangey makeup over deep pockmarks and sat at the table with the others to follow the program, removing her makeup and trying on what I was offering. After hearing her friends around the table exclaim over her new look and how great she looked, she requested some additional cleanser, got out her bag and reapplied her orangey stuff before she walked out the door to cross the street to her home.
The hostess was embarrassed and apologetic but I assured her that it was okay with me. Each of us needs to feel comfortable about the way we show up in the world. This woman needed that mask before she could even walk across the street to go home. She ignored her friends compliments and went behind the familiar mask, even though the new cosmetics were more flattering.
How easy it is to wear what’s familiar, even if it’s not the best for us? We sometimes find comfort in the familiar when it is painful just because we don’t want to move into new energy.
What is your security blanket? What mask do you wear that keeps you hiding from your beautiful real self because it is familiar and comfortable, even if your real self is more beautiful?
Uncovering the real self behind the mask is the work of personal growth. The transformations can be amazing! And it means letting go of the old masks, the old stories that we hide behind before we can shine the light of our real self out into the world.
I have a problem with some of the support groups out there that have you staying the victim of your story by repeating it over and over again. Your story is A story. It does not define WHO YOU REALLY ARE. The only reason to tell a story is to show how you’ve grown beyond it so that you can help someone else experience the same growth.
Listen to yourself and your chatter. Notice that your stories might be repeatedly keeping you the victim instead of being stories of empowerment. Notice that you might be hiding your inner light behind a mask that you can shed now.
You are not your stories. Let the light of the real you shine into the world without a mask!