The next six weeks of workshops are based around mask making. It stemmed from thinking about the metaphorical ‘masks’ we wear in our everyday lives.
They have their uses, for instance; they can allow us to become more extroverted, confident and make us able to achieve things that we may not think possible otherwise. A good example of this for me is giving presentations, public speaking is something that can be very difficult. The way I got around my presentation anxiety was to create a persona or mask that I could build up, put on and that made feel confident talking in front of people. Obviously this wasn’t all I did, i practiced, but it enabled me to do things I could convince myself weren’t possible at times.
I read somewhere ( I will try to remember where) that personality is just a collection of habits that stuck. This can be helpful building up good characteristics but it can also do the opposite. It can stop you being able to achieve things because you have simply decided you can’t. Our personalities, traits and rules we’ve made can feel impossible to break, especially when other people’s expectations are involved. Maybe if we were able to move more fluidly between, and navigate facets or masks more openly this pressure would be ‘consistent’ would be less so.
I have always loved fancy dress, dressing up becoming a character even for a few hours. It can enable you to explore and express even the smallest aspect of your personality freely without judgement.
With anxiety and depression the masks we wear can be a way of protecting ourselves and allow us to go about day to day life, unnoticed. It can be useful in terms of functioning, maintaining relationships and jobs. It can be helpful if underneath the mask is positive drive to learn to cope with what is troubling you. This mask is only good as an interim, a short term solution to buy you some time. we often keep this mask on for way too long until it can no longer hold back the floods. It’s about time we set fire to this way of coping, that we stop worrying about people thinking we are not capable, that we are weak! We have been hiding behind this mask for too long.
I have talked about some of the masks I wear, what are yours?
If you would like to come to the workshop click here!