Why is there so much fear about being transparent? Is it because if we let our masks slip momentarily people will recognise that we’re imperfect beings just like everybody else? Our desire to portray ourselves as confident capable beacons of light mask deeper insecurities and fears that lay hidden beneath the surface. We all wear various masks for different occasions and people, which one are you wearing today? They serve us greatly but every now and again it’s ok to put them down and bare our soul.
Not so long ago I received an angry email from someone upset with my piece titled Teachers Keep it in Your Trousers! They told me how mutual friends had conveyed their ‘disappointment’, and that they where considering legal action but where totally ‘unaffected’ by the article (bizarre given that they where considering legal action?) immediately I caught a huge whiff of fear from the person and their message. It almost knocked me off my seat due to its potency, but I decided to respond from compassion instead of anger.
As an Empath I often walk around in other peoples skin in order to gain a fresh perspective. Empathy helps us determine why people behave in a particular way, each has their story, each their dream. Does anyone enjoy having unpleasant things written about them? For their mask to be unveiled publicaly, for the past to play catch up? And one side of the story conveyed?
I realise what makes it more grating for this person is that they have a public profile to maintain and we share mutual friends. How then could I respond with anger for I too wear a mask of my own. So I replied with kindness, comically this further aggravated this person leading me to block them on social media. This act prevented an outbreak of the ‘I’m right and you’re wrong’ debacle from ensuing.
You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view… Until you climb inside of his skin and walk around in it.
Atticus Finch, To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee
It wouldn’t surprise me if this latest article is also misunderstood and pushing the ole’ anger buttons (I think I have a penchant for pushing buttons in people. Whilst studying Qigong in China I often triggered people in the group because my way of thinking was different from the collective, it was also partly because I was young and spiritually ‘expressive’) Apparently there are spies or ‘mutual friends’ on standby to report back if they see this persons name mentioned in any of my articles or on my facebook page
I must admit I’ve always found narcissism endlessly entertaining! Despite this I still send positive intentions to this being, such people and difficulties are fertile for cultivating loving-kindness, self-discipline and patience. It doesn’t particularly appeal to me to waste time worrying about what people might or might not think of me, and what I choose to share. I don’t purposefully share this information out of malice or revenge, that’s neither my nature or style. It comes as a desire to become more transparent, open and vulnerable in my writing which aids my own healing and serves others in theirs.
Transparency at it’s core
Transparency is a scary place for most of us isn’t it? Depending on your point of perspective it can represent:
- A place where we risk being misunderstood and ridiculed.
- A place where we might be rejected.
- A place where we’ll be judged.
- A place of vulnerubility.
- A place that makes us feel unsafe.
- A place that might hurt anothers feelings or be deemed inappropriate.
Particularly if we’re taking on roles where we hold greater responsibility and awareness such as Teaching. People naturally have an expectation, they expect you to have all your crap together! Well guess what? Time and time again the Cosmos has shown me that these are self-created delusions we aspire towards like wee gerbils on a wheel.
Transparency isn’t everyones cup of tea but it can act as a powerful catalyst for so much much more:
- A place of courage and inner strength.
- A place where we have nothing to hide.
- A place without feelings of shame.
- A place where we’re free to express ourselves.
- A place we feel liberated from expectation and pressure.
- A healing place.
- A place that makes it ok for others to step forward and share.
- A place that creates closeness and intimacy.
- A place that acts as a protective shield, when you bare your soul nothing anyone says can harm you.
Perhaps what people fear the most about transparency and ourselves is acceptance. Especially when our shadow is unwillingly exposed and opened for public scrutiny. Forcing us into action or lack thereof. The Universe is always encouraging us to deal with our short comings otherwise we see them repeatedly mirrored to us through people, events and circumstances until we get the message. What will you choose? Fear or transparency? Both are valid, yet one holds greater potential for authenticity, healing and growth.
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