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The social character: bit parts and major roles

October 18, 2014

Have you ever been told that you’re not yourself today?

It has occurred to me that this is not necessarily a far stretch for many, if not most mere mortals on a day-to-day basis in the real world.

Granted, that is not to say that we are not (some of us) authentic beings at heart. Sincerity, truth and positive motives are definitely alive and well in a majority of the people I know to exist around the planet. Don’t be fooled by the media focus on those who might tend to rank amongst the cons and artists that are out to pull the proverbial or realistic rug over our eyes (although they definitely do exist…)

I am also not necessarily referring to the planet filled with thespians and aspiring thespians (not that there is anything wrong with that!) There is a difference between creating a character for art and being a character in life.

What I do want to speak of are the roles I find myself playing on a regular basis and sometimes on the spur of a moment in order to work my way through the world I live in.

No, this does not mean I must create characters to survive and manipulate my outcomes… but isn’t that a little bit of what we do, consciously and unconsciously throughout the many places we go and with many of the people we deal with or meet?

For example: I have established a character I feel works best for the workplace in the role that I currently hold. This character is not scripted, nor is he perfect and completely successful. Over the years I have learned what does and does not work with certain people, groups, situations and purposes. Because of this I have formed a role that I have learned to play in these places (again, sometimes I am “on” and somedays I am not paying attention to best practices of the character.)

In social situations I am yet another character. I am, perhaps, a bit more guarded and a little less of what I might feel is necessary in the work mode. When I drank the social character was far more gregarious and outspoken but I retired that piece of me some 23/24 years ago.

With people I work with (in other non-job capacities) I am still another person…. this one closer and more fine-tuned towards the authenticity I have honed over the years. This part of my personality has worked with patience, understanding and a listening ear, traits I have been taught by others in the same sort of role towards me.

With Family, (and this one could range wildly for many of us,) I am still another person. I don’t see them as much and there is no need to really bring in some of the characteristics of the other “roles” I have created in a well-rounded and busy life. For some the “role” with the family may be the least authentic. I can tell you for me this was the case many years ago. Today it is the closest to the chest (outside of the relationship I have with my husband, where I am, hopefully, the definitive character I was meant to be here on this planet.)

Does this mean I have many personalities? Am I confessing to being inauthentic or a fake? No. What I am writing about today is the many different facets our personalities hold and the importance of true intention and rigorous honesty in our relationships for all parts of our daily lives, from the barista in the coffee shop, to the boss, to the casual acquaintances and right down to the lovers, wives, and husbands.

But the social character must also look at him or herself in the mirror and know that the most basic of roles is based in true intention. If I am going to go out there solely to win or win-over, only to survive or protect myself I might be missing the core point of any of the characters I am or can be. Any part of my personality that shines through in any given situation, creating the most appropriate character at that time is going to lose if they are not there to offer at least a part of themselves in service.

I am happiest when I know I am here to give it away.

Not everyday is easy. Not every character is good (it is easy to find oneself inside a darker mood and character that results in loneliness and sadness,) but my experience has told me that every character I am or create is, in part, a sum of the whole and a factor in my overall purpose.

Who are you today? I would love to say that I am one person who is always going to be the same cheerful, loving and honest, magnanimous soul. I know this is not correct. I know I am many different facets of myself from the moment I wake until the time I lay down to sleep at night. Each of these comes from the right place for as long as I am living within my best intention.

There will be no Academy Award for the characters that make up the personality as a whole. Just, hopefully, the satisfaction of feeling better about who I am.

Stop. Smile. Breathe.

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