Life holds many mysteries just as a mask mysteriously hides the identity of who or what is behind it. Curiosity may be aroused as an individual experiences a feeling of anticipation while waiting for the revelation of the mystery.

A mask is used as a cover-up, a means of hiding the true identity or image behind the mask. A mask is used by millions of children and adults for Halloween, masquerades, parties, festivals such as Mardi Gras and the Chinese New Year celebration, and various productions. These are festive occasions for the purpose of entertainment and excitement, and often bring enjoyment to the participants. I’m sure all of you reading this have donned a mask sometime in your life.

These masks are quite visible and are often recognizable as someone who once lived, a cartoon or mythical character, or someone who is well known in our present life. But some people wear another type mask.

The mask I’ve just referenced is an invisible mask, one we recognize as a specific identity when in reality it is a cover-up to hide the true identity of an individual. You’ve probably heard something like this: “he/she sure showed their true colors.” In this situation another side of an individual showed up and for that moment their invisible mask was removed. What they were hiding beneath their mask was now revealed.

My belief is that many people in your life right now are wearing a mask; maybe you are too. You believe them to be a particular person when in actuality they are someone else. Perhaps they always smile and act really happy but inside they are scared and insecure. One day an incident happens and something they say or do shows their other side, sometimes referred to as their “dark side.”

As a spiritual life coach I see this cover-up continually because individuals seek me out once they can no longer deal with the internal battle going on within them. The stress involved with trying to hold up the image of who they are trying to be becomes too much and they fold. Yet others spend their entire life holding onto the image and wearing the mask no matter what it costs them.

Stress is a killer as anyone in the health field will tell you, even the medical profession. Stress breaks down the immune system, burns out the adrenal glands - our stress regulator, contributes to heart disease as well as many other diseases, and ruins many relationships. Trying to keep up the image of your mask is a major stressor and will, at some point, create a disastrous effect in your life.

So what’s the solution? It’s really quite simple but hard for so many people to implement - simply be yourself. This means that no matter where you are or who you are with, you always act the same way, talk the same way, and are the same. Your standards, values and ethics remain constant and everyone around you can vouch for who you are.

In the past I was very insecure and had a very low self-image, so I pretended to be this got-it-all-together person. I wanted to prove to myself as well as my friends and family how great I was by doing many physical things to prove I was accomplished and worthy of the image they had of me. Yet inside I was afraid and anxious, never able to really relax, because I felt I really wasn’t that altogether person with all those abilities, and could never measure up. It created a great stress within me because I knew I really didn’t think that highly of myself, that I was certainly less than perfect, even though I worked hard by doing and producing many extra things to hopefully convince myself and those in my life that I was that altogether, amazing person. Then one day I crashed!

I had driven myself into poor health with worry and cover-up. My adrenals were a mess but no one figured that out, so I suffered. My healing journey took years until I understood the whole picture. Yes, my physical body had broken down and had to be addressed with proper nutrients and lifestyle changes, but the reason it had broken was because of my internal stressors and lack of awareness of my inborn magnificence. I had grown up with the wrath of God hanging over my head if I didn’t do things a certain way, so I always felt I was inadequate. But as I became an adult I learned how to hide from my fears and inadequacies by pretending to be the person I wanted to be: cool, calm, collected, happy and full of vibrancy and joy. I also grew to understand that by the time the physical symptoms had surfaced, the negative energy I created within me had traveled through the mental, emotional and spiritual realms, and when it hit the physical realm, well, that’s when it got my intention - the cosmic two-by-four if you will.

As I began to discover my true identity, that I was in fact a child of God and born with amazing gifts and the power to create whatever I wanted in my life, I began to shift from my internal battle of low self-worth to the realization that I didn’t need to prove to anyone my worth because I was already worthy from birth. First I began to understand it in my head and accept that belief, but it wasn’t until I brought it down into my heart so that I truly knew this fact that I became the person I always dreamed of becoming: cool, calm, collected, happy, full of vibrancy and joy. The most amazing aspect of this entire transformation was the fact that the mask I had been wearing for years was actually who I could be and finally became!

So often we pose as the person we want to be when in reality we can be that person. It begins with self-approval, knowing you are worthy just as you are and don’t have to do anything to earn your worthiness. Most individuals will put a mask on their face of whom they wish to be, someone better than they believe they are. And we do find that some people pretend to be loving, caring people with high integrity only to discover that was a cover-up of the not so loving, caring or ethical person they portrayed. Sad to say but some people are pretty evil inside and eventually their ugliness appears. I’ve heard a story several times of individuals living two lives simultaneously, married to two spouses with two sets of children, yet neither of the spouses knowing the truth until one day all of the deception surfaced and the real story was exposed. I’m afraid we do find many people who wear this mask of deception.

When I took off my mask and became my true self, what a relief. No more self-pity or self-disapproval. I became the same every day without inhibitions and without shame or blame. I shed stress like a winter coat on a warm spring day. I was able to breathe deeply and relax, something I had to learn to do since I had become a expert at shallow breathing and tightly knotted muscles, symptoms of stress. All of this became possible as a result of changing my innermost programming into believing and accepting my true worth; a mask was no longer needed or wanted for their was no longer anything to hide.

My invitation to you is to grab your mask, rip it off, and toss it into the trash. Go inside and find out who you truly are and then live as that person. If you don’t like what you see, and most probably there will be things you will want to change, then get started releasing your old thoughts and beliefs about yourself and begin shifting into the thoughts and beliefs that will propel you into the person you want to be. I can promise that if you truly want to make the changes, you will be able to do it. It begins with a choice, your choice, and with that choice comes an incredible opportunity, the opportunity of creating an extraordinary life as the person you wish to be!

Make the choice today to begin a new direction, one that allows you to be you, just as you are, a wonderful, fantastic, magnificent individual with the power to create the life you want. You don’t need a mask; you only need a mirror to see your true self!

Author's Bio: 

Carolyn Porter, D. Div., is a Spiritual Wholeness & Health Coach, Speaker, Trainer for Speaking, Coaching and Angel Practitioner, Angel Channel, Author of 5 books and 2 audios, Co-author of 101 Great Ways to Improve Your Life Vol I, and owner of Where Miracles Happen Healing Center in Woodstock, GA. Carolyn has dedicated her life to helping individuals step into their own power and accept their brilliance so they can create the life they truly want and deserve. For more information or to view her books, visit www.drcarolynporter.com or www.wheremiracleshappen.com.