The best me: better not today!

Honest is the new Stark. Right now, when the world demands so much from us, more and more people are showing themselves to be vulnerable – with amazing consequences.

Sina Teigelkötter

Some may still go out of their way to celebrate the best version of themselves. But the times when appearance is more important than being are coming to an end. We long for authenticity – and true closeness.

Nothing is good. The world is still struggling with the plague, we fear for those we love, feel restricted and lonely and fear for our jobs. Our children stress us and we stress them, we are tired and exhausted. But we are not alone in this! Even on Instagram, this damned medium of posers, these and similar status messages have been popping up lately: “I have to overcome getting up in the morning”, “Just working” or “Soon won’t be able to anymore”. The “new normal”, as much as it demands of us, also creates more moments in which we show each other more genuinely, with less make-up than before. Finally!

Our actions influence our environment

Because doesn’t it feel good to be able to say all of this? Isn’t it a relief not to perform perfectly for a moment, to no longer have to play a role, to be able to let go of the mask? And to find out that the others are not so very different?

Those who open up encourage others to reveal themselves as well.

When we tell about our dreams and nightmares, about what drives and moves us, honestly and unfiltered, we show each other as we really are. This is the only way to create closeness, connection. And when we share a story, it becomes less difficult not only for us but for everyone. When actress Meghan Markle wrote about her miscarriage late last year, it was such an aha moment.

Actually, we have known for a long time that we are sharing our true stories right now, in this crisis, for a reason: We simply can no longer stage ourselves as the perfect version of ourselves. Because it is exhausting to pull up the corners of our mouths every day when we actually feel like crying. Because it costs an awful lot of energy, which we hardly have enough of anyway – and which we need for more important things. But couldn’t we have used it for other purposes beforehand? For example, to face our problems, to tackle what slows us down and burdens us?

We have to be brave

But it takes courage to be open. That is why we often hesitate so long or leave it, when we are asked how we are, at the end of the day with a “okay”. Much more could be done here. Wouldn’t it feel good if this discrepancy between what we portray on the outside and what we are on the inside disappeared? “I want to be completely honest with you”: Wouldn’t it be nice if we heard this sentence a lot more often (and not automatically only think of cheating or resigning)?

Anyone who reveals themselves must dare to take risks. This is often easier for extroverts than for introverts. If you decide to reveal a lot about yourself, you should be prepared for the fact that not only love will strike you – this is especially true for the Internet. “I also don’t believe that everyone can and that everyone should try,” says psychologist and author Anne Otto. Anne Otto’s current book is called: “Where does the hatred come from?” (P. 72, 22 euros, Gütersloher publishing house)

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“The question is: How important is the matter to me? Can, for example, other people draw a lot of strength from my openness? If my vision is big enough, I will also be able to withstand criticism and malice.”

This means that everyone should do a kind of cost-benefit calculation for themselves before they “move out”. The ability not to take things too personally is also very valuable. “If you manage to put factual content above relationship content, you don’t feel threatened so easily,” said Otto.

Of course, this is not so easy, especially when it comes to very personal issues. Nevertheless: It can always be worthwhile. Because if we all become more open and show ourselves in our imperfection and uniqueness, we motivate more and more people to do the same. And in this way show everyone how diverse life really is.

Would you like to read more about the topic and exchange ideas with other women? Then take a look at the “Personality Forum” BRIGITTE community past!

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BRIGITTE 09/2021