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There are 2 things that put me at ease.
- Knowing I have a good book to read at the end of the day
- Knowing there are TV shows I enjoy on the DVR.
When I have these 2 things life is good. I am a simple girl.
So it is no surprise that, in the summer, when the DVR is looking pretty bleak, we binge watched Orange is the New Black over a few nights.
One of my favorite characters in that show is a Transgendered inmate Sophia played by Laverne Cox. There is an authenticity that comes from this character that I love. Recently she did an interview where she said she found peace in her life when she finally quit lying to herself and quit pretending to be something she wasn’t.
And it struck me – that feeling of being tired of lying to yourself. of being tired of pretending, is what spurs a lot of people to start looking for answers. It is why I sought out a counselor so many years ago, and it is why a lot of my clients walk into the Loft. They are tired of lying to themselves… whether it be about their job, their marriages, their family relationships, or friendships. They are tired of pretending. Tired of putting on the mask and just ‘going along’. And that is the first step to Living Happier: recognizing that the mask doesn’t make you happier–it just makes you more miserable. Things only get better when you can lay the mask aside and be you… strengths, weaknesses, masks, and all.
Sometimes we are so good at lying to ourselves, we don’t even know we are doing it. So, here are some questions to ask yourself:
- Do you secretly dread certain events, because you know you have to behave a certain way or risk rejection?
- Do you find yourself dressing a certain way or acting a certain way around certain people?
- Is the you at home alone VASTLY different than the you in public?
- If a fly on the wall saw you at home and then saw you in public, would they be shocked at the difference?
How can you start acting like the GENUINE YOU? Sometimes, we have gotten so good at pretending who we think we SHOULD be, that we have completely lost touch with the genuine article. It’s all about baby steps.
- Practice being yourself with safe people. Practice fully showing up around your spouse, kids, close friends etc.
- Have some curiosity about you: What is it YOU love? What makes YOU happy? What parts of your life do YOU want to explore?
- Where are you and with whom are you most likely to pick up the mask? Is it safe to slowly remove the mask? If not, are these people you REALLY want to be hanging around with?
- Take time to quiet the inner chatter and to just be.
- Offer yourself radical acceptance – remember, you are human
One of the best ways to stop lying to yourself is to start learning about yourself and your triggers, hot buttons, and what makes you tick. The Enneagram Personality Inventory provides great insight into how we lie to ourselves and the defense mechanisms and behaviors we engage in when we are feeling threatened. Next Saturday at the Live Happier Loft we are having a 3 hour seminar on the Enneagram and I promise you will walk away with new insight into yourself and the significant others in your life. Please join us… you can register here.