It’s funny how everybody considers honesty a virtue, yet no one wants to hear the truth. The same can be said about the identities hiding behind masks that only symbolize sugarcoated lies. The only justification for these identities would be that it conceals them from their lack of self-confidence. It prevents others to see the authenticity of each and every face behind a lie. No one wants to be called egotistical or conceited because they are not considered desired traits.
John Lennon once said, “If being an egomaniac means I believe in what I do and in my art or music, then in that respect you can call me that I believe in what I do, and I’ll say it. ” He proves to us that although some individuals are strong enough to be and say exactly who they are, others are too weak to conquer the fear of not being accepted by others. Despite fifteen years of taking into account everyone else’s perspective of me, I still can’t explain to myself the reasons as to why I feel that any opinion should matter.Order now
So then the question is, what is it about the judgement of others that is so important, that we feel a need to cloak who we truly are? Being “odd” means not fitting in or having different characteristics than everyone else’s view of “normal. ” As a result, I put on a mask that resembles those who are seen as “normal” to blend in with the crowd. In a sense, normality is just a paved road: it’s comfortable to walk, but no flowers grow on it. The idea of normal is just the thought of doing what a large portion of the community is doing, but how can you be your own person if you are just like everybody else?
People want to fit in with the crowd and be seen as normal so that they are not called weird. Imagine being singled out in the center of a room with the spotlight on top and a crowd of kids, teenagers, adults, and everyone you know standing five feet around surrounding you staring, pointing, snickering, laughing at you; It’s a petrifying feeling that makes some of us take an easy way out to end it permanently. The need to please someone’s judgement can consume us until our last breath and it ends up controlling a large portion of who we are.
It prevents us from the people we want to be and stops us from going to where we want to go. The necessity to please can drive us to do unspeakable things. For example, Jack Merridew, a young boy from the book Lord of the Flies, by William Golding, took drastic measures in order to make sure that he was seen as the person he wanted everyone else to think of him as. He cared too much about the fact that if he was not chief for the rest of the boys stranded on the island, then everyone would see him as just another one of the kids.
Therefore his significance in the story would dwindle and diminish. He wanted the boys to see him as the leader that everyone could look up to as well as fear. In order to gain this ranking, he did what was expected and wanted from him. He gave the boys a savage excitement of the slaughtering of a life. At first, it was to supply them with sustenance, but then it became a hobby that eventually lead them to end the life of one of their own. Jack was then blinded by the acceptance of the boys to realize that their opinion of him had changed him from whom he simply wanted to be.
A leader, not a violent figurehead. In the movie Grease, directed by Randal Kleiser, Danny Zuko, the head of the popular biker boys, tries to maintain his reputation just to meet his friends’ and the rest of the school’s expectations of him, but disappoints the girl of his dreams in the process. The man he had been with Sandy Olssen had no worries or concerns about being seen as something that was considered “uncool. ” He did not have a reputation to uphold because he was not surrounded by people whose judgement meant his permanent label.
Later on, he realizes his mistake and that the only judgement that should matter is his own and how that affects his happiness. Seeing that the women of his dreams only loved him for him and not the charade he played in front of his peers caused him to see the error of his ways. He stopped pretending to be a womanizer. He stopped acting like he was a selfish macho. He no longer cared about whether or not his reputation was cool or uncool. He became conscious of the fact that his happiness did not come from the judgment of others, but of what he thought of himself.
When we act as something we are not, that reputation starts to take control of us until we feel that it is a true part of who we are. The only reason we act as something we’re not is to please those who surround us. When I was younger, I let myself be someone I didn’t want to be simply because I felt that if I truly acted like who I was, I would be labeled as weird and different. I would either be seen as the class clown, the person you didn’t want to talk to, or the person you absolutely wanted to be friends with, but I didn’t dare to take the risk to find out.
As a result, I became a person in the background. Someone who was needed, but not important. I let that reputation take hold of me and define who I was in front of everyone I made contact with. Each class defined what I was like because of the people who surrounded me, but the problem was that it gave people an image of the kind of person they thought I was. Every person is different and unique, therefore my personality felt a need to alter with each encounter I had with another human being. I found myself trying to accommodate to their likings so that I was not seen as an outsider.
A few years later, I realized that by caring about the judgements of others, I also ruined that part of my life. After completing my eighth grade year, I changed schools and entered a brand new environment where people did not yet have any kind of image of me. It allowed me to make a fresh start and to reflect upon my previous years of taking into account the opinions of people who were just like me. I was finally able to see clear enough to know that a lot of people have the same problem that I had and still struggle with today.
So in reality, the judgement of others can blind us from seeing the type of people we really want to be. It prevents us because we fear the thought of being labeled something out of the ordinary even though we still want to be normal. So then why pretend to be something we are not if someone else’s opinion is just as good as our own about others? No matter what, the masks will still be worn even though the identity behind it can see clearly about who they are. In truth, no one is normal. I am not normal. I don’t want to be. I don’t want to pretend to be anymore. I am me.