The Many Faces of You!
We all know by now that each of us play several roles in each and every moment of our lives. Some may include: employee, spouse, child, student. And then of course, the less definitive titles of friend, lover, healer.
While we have all had enough basic to psych to be comfortable assuming those labels, I have found that within each role that we assume, there are varying faces that we share. It’s at this level with the lines become blurred as we fascilate on a continuum of conscious to auto-pilot where we often miss the opportunity become happier. Without this awareness it’s easy for us to get stuck and lose the vitality and understanding ourselves unable to make good decisions.
In honor of Mental Health Awarenes month, I thought it might be interesting for each of us to introduce ourselves to our own faces and see if they are congruent with our intention and personal growth.
If the statistics about depression are correct, we are all often at odds with ourselves, our relationships, and our life style choices. According to recent stats:
- 1 in 10 Americans experience depression at some point in their lives.
- Over 80% of the people who have clinical depression are not receiving any specific treatment for it.
- Individuals who are more prone to depression are those who are unemployed or recently divorce.
- Depression is most prevalent in those between the ages of 45-64.
- Overall, women have higher rates of depression compared to males the same age.
- Worldwide 121 million suffer from some form of depression.
- We haven’t even touched the other mental issues like bi-polar, anti-social, etc.
At this time I’d like to respectfully introduce you to other aspects of yourself that want to meet you:
1.Day Face: This is the one that appears ok with life even when you are suicidal. The one that answers “Fine” when others ask, “How are you today?” Front Face is the actor of all of the faces and hides the truth that there even existare dimensions of yourself. This is the face of obedience, law and order, and ‘fake it til you make it’ theology. In and of itself, Day Face is stuck.
2. Cocktail Face: Similar to the left side of the brain…the cocktail face tells itself, “I pulled that one off. No one has a clue that I’m on the edge.” This is also the face that tries to get by doing as little as possible. It is the runner, the lier, the one full of it’s own bullshit and believes it. It lacks courage to look beyond this moment in time. In and of itself, Cocktail Face is stuck.
3. Baby Face: Similar to the right side of the brain and all of those childhood fantasys of happy ever after, Baby Face says, “I wonder if there’s a way out but hasn’t a clue on how to go about it. This person would rather play video games, escape growing up. It’s the woman who foolishly expects Prince Charming to fix it. Can I still make my life what I always wanted.” Baby Face often looks out into space spending more time in a dream state than here with us. My opinion, is that Baby Face is most able to bounce back good mental health because it has a childlike hope. But, in and of itself, Baby Face is stuck.
I feel I’ve personally lingered wearing my Baby Face too long ruining marriages, staying with the wrong guys, and living in a fantasy about who my perfect mate is. You guessed it. I let my Baby Face imprint with Frankie Valli at the age of six. It’s all there in my first book, Big Girls Do Cry. Check out what being stuck can do to your life.
4. Lost Face: Poor Lost Face is the dark side that is crumbling inside afraid to cry out for help. It is the one who is incapable of movement out of the hole of despair. Their legos have fallen and they don’t want to pick them. The raging self loathing, self judging is the worst of the characters we watch in movies. The Lost Face is terrified of what may happen if he or she shows up for the rest of the world to see. Lost Face is often isolated and repressed until the other faces have lost all hope in their despair. In and of itself, Lost Face is stuck.
When the Four Faces face off against one another the end result is mental illness.
If the four faces meet, acknowledge, and share their strengths they can find solutions to what breaks them now only bending in the winds of life without breaking.
Tips to integrate into your being to avoid a FACE OFF:
1. Acknowledge that you are not the only one with separate faces. Every one of us has many faces and we all struggle more the same then differently.
2. It’s OK to keep parts of yourself private to the world but not to yourself.
3. Each face can help the other grow and blend together to find union with yourself and with others in the world.
4. Even the darkest thoughts can give you guide posts on what to keep and what to leave behind in your mind, your heart, and your soul.
If integration does NOT occur:
The four faces stay alone until either their hopeless melts their face away and they are left only with Lost Face leading to mental health problems.
Meet your faces. Acknowledge that they are there trying to protect you. Join together and resist the urge to fight a part of yourself even if it means telling that face, “thank you, but I’ll take it from here.”
The part of yourself you are hiding from is the only one that can help you be happy!
April of Course