It is a natural social dynamic and it can be fun or even creative to present a mask to the outside world. There is nothing inherently wrong with doing that. The problems start when you have no other choice than to wear a mask, leaving you to always have to wear one.
When you realise you are trapped behind a mask you are probably entangled in a dysfunctional dynamic. You might have identified entirely with a role: maybe you are the very reliable employee, or the dutiful son, the caring wife or the sexy, carefree woman.
There comes the moment where we feel the life created for the outside world is so far away from who you truly are that it starts to hurt. This is when you feel detached or disconnected from who you essentially are.
Whatever mask it is for you, once you start to search and understand why you choose the one particular mask you are carrying, and what the motivation behind holding on to this role is, then you are starting to uncover your true face.
This roles we frequently present to the world most of the times have been generated as a survival strategy to escape from, or compensate for the humiliations, hurts and unfulfilled needs of our past.
There is a part of us that has an idealised vision of who we are supposed to be, often it represents an adopted role we learned in our family. The stronger we identify with this mask/role the less we are able to see why we created it, and what we are trying to hide with it.
If the identification is strong people invest a lot of energy in trying to perfectionise their mask. The dutiful wife wants to know how to be more submissive or the perfectionist wants to know how to get more done….but something deep inside knows that this urge is driven by a painful deception.
Inside you feel empty and maybe even undeserving and so you try even harder.
Often the mask also distorts your needs. For example the need for another or the need for love becomes the need to be special. Instead of understanding that you need connection, you try to be more perfect.
The energy of a mask lacks vitality and authenticity and creates separation.
Being real and being connected is not an easy thing to do, but whenever we feel we must be better, bigger, more interesting, more beautiful to be part of the game, we send a message to ourself saying we are not good enough as we are.