How many times have we heard or said “the masks will fall”? Well, that’s the topic of the week in #einsights. Diane Dahre talks to Torrego about this facet of human behavior and psychology.
Returning to the falling masks, this expression usually has a negative connotation, related to people who would supposedly be false and present themselves socially in a way and, with the passage of time, reveal what would be the true personality.
The fact is that we all use social masks in some way at some point in our lives. Sometimes it is because we need to take on a certain posture during work hours, other times we can acquire a lighter behavior in a more relaxed home environment, from time to time we rescue manias and habits when we find friends from childhood … These social adaptations are necessary and natural that happen in all walks of life and vary according to the role we are playing.
For example, when we show joy, but in fact we are not in the best days; or when transmitted a lot of security and deep down we are scared to death. These are some everyday situations of when we choose to use the masks consciously, out of necessity or for protection of oneself or the other.
Going a little deeper, some masks carry traumas, and we may say that they have the good intention of protecting the person and preventing them from suffering further pain. The one who appears to be tough, for example, is not always tough. Sometimes it may just be an escape or, as we’re talking, a mask to hide traumas suffered in the past. And the result would be this almost “insensitive” personality to hide an insecurity and also protect himself from suffering again. Another example is one that is dependent on relationships (be it love, friendship, professional or family) for having suffered an abandonment and now, to avoid opening this wound or not to risk the new rejection, wear that mask – in some moments, can be confused or even become a submission.
Is it really you?
But such masks do not always appear responsibly or we make good use of them. Sometimes a person “enters into the character” in a way so intense that it is not itself, acts without truth with its own essence.
Psychology calls this a False Self, something like a pseudo-personality. What happens is this: since we were born, we develop our personality from experiences and experiences in our daily lives that we store and store. Together, they tell our story and shape our profile. It is called the True Self that personality that emerges spontaneously in people, the fruit of these experiences that we accumulate. And the false self is when these characteristics are formed by external influence, when we make or follow decisions and wishes of third parties, be it the partner, the parents, the boss …. That situation where the other says what and how to do, you know? According to Diana Dahre, in the office this is a very common complaint among those who are or have been in a relationship for a long time. “The person arrives and does not know who he is, what he likes … He does not know if he likes chocolate ice cream or what kind of music is hers.” The symbiosis with the other was so great that you lose your personality. ” that in the beginning of the passion, it is easier to accept the other. Over time, with the fire of the weakest novelty, the woman tends to want the man to change and the man wants her to remain the same as before.
It also happens when a person devotes himself entirely to work so intensely and lets it take away from his life that when he loses his job, for example, he considers it to be a loss of his own identity and he is lost, and he can even go into depression.
Another tricky use of masks, according to Diane, is when the person wants to impress the other, and then wears clothes, marks and behaviors that do not match their true self (and sometimes even their financial conditions). But they do it anyway because they think it is their best and that way, they will attract and feel part of certain groups and tribes, or simply please or avoid judgments and criticism. Like what depressive who pretends to be happy, the one in crisis that transpires a perfect life, the anxious that says to be in peace …
To an even greater degree, psychopathy is a type of mask. “They are very intelligent people, very observant and use this to attract and get what they want from the other, use them to do what they want,” explains Diana. Generally, this personality trait is very linked to power and those who have this profile tend to positions like company CEO, doctor, lawyer … Remembering we are talking about low degrees of psychopathy, not those famous cases of serial killer or anything close to that.
Mask in the other
And when we do not wear the mask, but put it on the other? That happens too. They are those cases where we create a lot of expectations about someone, imagine and want it to be in a certain way, or even project our failings, weaknesses and desires into it. And then, when we discover that this person is not what we imagine, we go through disappointment.
The best way to know how to deal with these real and false masks, easy to carry or super difficult to understand, our masks or third parties, is to have knowledge and self-knowledge: to know who you are. And the way for that to happen is to seek therapy. It is not that everyone needs therapy, but it is certainly a tool that works well for everyone. It makes you think better, watch yourself, and understand yourself, the other, and the world.