Posted by: MarlaHB | April 8, 2009

Removing the masks…


“Looking back on my work today, I think the best I have done grew out of things deeply felt, the worst from a pride in mere talent.”     Diego Rivera

Why is it so challenging to live life with integrity – to remove the masks – even when it is our intention to do so?

Living from soul versus intellect seems to be my theme for reflection this week. It had been on my mind as a topic for a regular column I write. Then it was further reinforced at my weekly chiropractor appointment when we sat down to review my progress over the past few months.

It seems that the emotional “stuff” attached to the masks – and the stories I have told myself – has had a physiological impact on me that has been slow to reverse. My pattern of emotional ‘shut down’ in an attempt to protect myself has been mirrored in my nervous system, now limiting my ability to fully live a vibrant life – unless I make some changes.

I suppose it’s the result of all the years of trying to bury the emotion rather than actually addressing the causes. Even with the weekly adjustments and biofeedback training, my body is stuck.

Unfortunately, I think it’s all too easy to follow the path of least resistance until we are so far from our authentic self that it feels almost impossible to go back. As we continue to do so, the voice of our soul gets covered in layer after layer until it can barely be heard.

At some point though, in a moment of clarity, we realize we’ve gone too far. And the voice inside us pleads, “Enough is enough. Listen to me or I’ll be lost forever.“ Hopefully it happens while we still have time to make changes in our life.

I’ve had moments like these. Each day now, I am consciously choosing to trust my inner voice and follow an authentic path. But I know that the stories and masks are still there.

Now is an opportunity to create new stories that support the vibrant future that I desire. To gather fuel for the process, I’ve been reflecting on (and journaling about) the specific times in my life when I felt genuine pride.

When I refer to pride, I don’t mean the things that “should” feel good to you. It is important to distinguish between what is genuine and what is learned. You’ll know it – for me it feels like a deep sense of strength and knowing.

Try it for yourself. Find a quiet space, grab a pen and some paper, get comfortable, breathe, put one hand on your heart and ask yourself – your genuine self – when are the times in my life that I felt truly proud of something I did? Big or small, try to recall examples that relate to body, mind, spirit and emotion.

Describe those situations in as much detail as possible. Feel them and connect to them so strongly that you can’t hold back the tears – or the excitement.

I believe that these are your glimmers of truth. Go to them. Remember them. And use what you discover to direct your next steps toward living a joyful and meaningful life – without the masks.

We can do whatever we want to do. We can choose to take action that we think we “should” (because we’re good at it, it will make someone else happy, it’s tradition etc.). Or, we can choose to take action that comes from a much deeper place within us.

Today, what will you choose?


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: