MC's Whispers

Whispering Silences

Archive for the tag “pretend”

We all become what we pretend to be

©Dale Rogerson

As a child, she loved pretending and wearing costumes. Her favourite drama teacher warned that “no one can wear a mask for very long”. She needed to learn to distinguish when she was playing a role, and when she was being herself.

It was a dangerous thing to wear a mask and a costume; “we all become what we pretend to be”.

They strange thing she realised while acting was that a single person can wear many masks. And with each, they’ll tell another truth.

Yet, she loved to act; simply by changing looks and attitude, she could be anyone.

A man is least himself when he talks in his own person. Give him a mask and he will tell you the truth” – Oscar Wilde

Also part of Friday Fictioneers

A social condition

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They called it a condition. He called it honesty. But sometimes it made him seem rude. He couldn’t tell the difference.

He was used to speaking his mind without camouflage or fake kindness. If he didn’t like something he would say it, if he disagreed with someone he would point it out. Simply said, he couldn’t feign politeness in a world filled with people wearing masks.

He wasn’t the one to hide; from anyone or anything. But that often got him into trouble. Because not everyone appreciated the sincerity in which his words were uttered.

His belief was that if people couldn’t handle the truth, they shouldn’t be doing or saying things that were contrary to it.

In fact, he was convinced, that if people followed the norms of proper social conduct, so many fake masks would not be necessary.

But that was simply his thoughts. He lacked tact but that did not make him any less of a person than anyone pretending to be his friend.

The three faces

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“There is a Japanese saying that every person has three faces. The first face is the one you show to the world. The one you pretend to be, you sometimes even force yourself to present to others. The second face is the one you show to your close friends and family. It’s that side of your personality you only allow those near and dear to you to see. The third face is the one you never show to anyone. It’s the secret thoughts and fears you only keep to yourself. But this is the truest reflection of who you are”.

Uncle Kim had spent many years in Japan. He had a completely different mentality and world outlook to everyone else.

He understood when his nephew was disappointed or tired or sad and knew how to distinguish between the times he needed support or simply to be left alone for a while.

People strive to show others they are OK, they are fighting through anything that is bothering them. We more often than not put on a show to deceive ourselves more than everyone else. We want to appear as perfect as we idealise everyone to be. Or as near to that as possible. Then we chose a circle of our closest people and let them in a little closer to our heart and mind. We share with them some of our own thoughts, dreams and anguishes. But there is always one part we only keep to ourselves. Those things we never tell because often we don’t want to hear them out loud. We don’t want to admit to thinking them.

The truest form of who we are is the only face we see. But isn’t that a shame that we constantly live with masks on? So no one really ever knows one another.

Trying to unwind

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How many times have you found yourself in a situation in which you are forced to hide your true feelings? It has happened to us all. Either because you don’t agree with the rest of the opinions expressed and don’t want to elaborate; either because the conversation bores you; or you dislike the people around you; or worse yet because you’re in pain and want to hide it.

It is not easy when you’re suffering to pretend everything is OK. But most of us do so on a daily basis.

From the millions of things roaming in our minds, we only express a couple of them, not even half of what we truly think.

As a result, we suppress everything else leading our body to suffer from the toxicity of unexpressed thoughts, feelings, opinions. This in turn results in psychosomatic symptoms – the tendency to experience psychological distress in the form of physical symptoms. These may include chest pain, fatigue, dizziness, headache, oedema, back pain, shortness of breath, insomnia, abdominal pain, numbness, impotence, weight loss, cough, and constipation. This demonstrates that our minds and body are interlinked, entwined to the extent that the one affects the other. Emotional disturbances are often translated into physical symptoms, mostly evident in the effects we experience when we’re stressed, upset, scared, excited.

We often seek treatments in fast remedies – usually painkillers. We are advised patience and above all relaxation and calm. But the latter seem almost impossible when you’re in pain. In reality, we need the courage to seek the source of the distress, so we can change what provokes it. Only then will we truly be able to unwind.

Seeing is believing…or maybe not?

Don't believe everything you see - Abe LincolnHarold led an ideal life. He was the Gladstone Gander of the real world. He graduated college top of his class with businesses lining up with offers for employment. He found the job he wanted as soon as he had his diploma in hand, lived in a penthouse in the city centre, and had a vibrant social life. In short, life was good for Harold.

Or was it?

This is what Harold boasted on social media. That everything was going according to plan. That he loved his job and colleagues, that he was remunerated more than adequately, that he won every scratch card he got his hands on.

But this was far from the truth.

Because as Takehito Koyasu says, “You shouldn’t believe everything. What you see isn’t always right….The truth is in a place you can’t see.

In reality, Harold was unhappy. He barely graduated college because he had a miserable student life, with roommates he did not get along with, subjects he did not find interesting, and motivation that was lacking. Once he graduated, he worked as a waiter for five years, before landing a job at a company that paid a little over minimum wage and allowed him to attempt to practice what he studied. His social life was almost non-existent because of the very few friends he had and due to his introvert nature. He lived in an apartment on the ground floor that cost more than it was worth. And what is more, Harold never won the lottery or any scratch card he invested his money in.

Social media is an easy way of creating the life you wish you had. Because no-one can prove what you assert; and given the right angle or photo-shop, anything can appear skewed from the truth. It is just another demonstration of how gullible we all truly are. People will believe almost anything, even without proof. Why? Maybe because deep down we still want to believe in the good nature present in all, that we won’t lie to each other, because there is really no point in doing so. In the end, we are only lying to ourselves.

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