Many of us, leaders especially, are prone to habits of projecting a public image self and a private image self. I grew up in a church culture where I was left with the impression that appearing to be near perfect in public was the celebrated norm. Never weak, just trusting God, never worried, just “blessed and highly favored of the Lord,” too blessed to be depressed, put on your happy church face and keep it moving. On some level I believe it is good to project the positive, however when it crosses the line and becomes hypocrisy or when it moves us to a place where we are too proud to admit that we are human, thus becoming individuals who are placed on a high and lofty pedestal of perfection, I believe it crosses the line.
I listened to a sermon recently that addressed the topic of “influence,” and the speaker talked in depth regarding how easily people are influenced – whether for good or for evil, positive or negative. She eventually ended at a place of addressing areas of personal identity and asked – “how much of who you are is the real you, and how much of who you are is due to who and what you allow to influence you?”
The question is worth pondering. Additional questions worth pondering are: How much of who you allow others to see is the real you and how much of it is a facade? Who are you really? What are your goals, dreams, aspirations, plans, desires, unique personality traits and thoughts? Any self other than our true selves falls short of our ultimate best. So be bold enough to take off the mask and bless the world with the real you!