What I tell myself daily as a mantra and to my charges is to; “Be honest and true to yourself and as long as you know you have done your best with good intentions you can do no more and you can look at yourself in the mirror.” However society is content with and advocates hypocrisy; all around I see people behaving how they think and feel they ought to, talking about things they think makes them appear intelligent or interesting, dressing to impress rather than an extension of their personality, saying what others want to hear to get ahead and basically playing the game. Most of us have to at some point in our lives, even with our parents.
Recently I was vilified for advising a teenager to, ”Tell your parents what they need to know and what they want to hear.” Not necessarily lying, but more to limit information especially if you are financially dependent or still rely on them to provide a roof over your head. Parents will always see you differently no matter how old you are. The best way is to try to maintain a balance between ‘Playing the Game’ and retaining dignity and self-respect. I played the game during my years working in the corporate sector, with my bosses, clients and the public. Each night I could barely look at myself, all I could feel was disdain for myself.
Naturally being oneself comes with its own perils, learning how to say something rather than what you say, timing, intonation and body language. Sometimes it is better to remain neutral to avoid hurting any feelings or to simply change the topic. It is sad that being yourself is hard in today’s society compared to how easily it is to accept hypocrisy and a façade.
I am known for ‘Saying it as it is’ and ‘what you see is what you get’; friends are amused at my direct frankness. That is the only way I can be, people know where they stand with me. Naturally I can be diplomatic and politically correct when need be, but I can look at myself in the mirror and know I have been true to myself. My evening ritual of bathing was three-fold; to relax, have some me time and to wash away the day of what was false and negative. Those evenings used to be long and a relief to my inner self–the conscious self that ate away at what integrity I had left at the end of each day.
Integrity and self-worth are priceless and I have walked away from jobs and people in order to preserve my inner self and worth–because I am worth it.
Copyright © 2013 S.T.Alvyn All Rights Reserved