Genuine Conversations

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The need for genuine conversations

(Estimated Reading Time: 1 min, 45 sec)

Q: Will we one day have genuine conversations and stop being ashamed of ourselves? Occasionally, we feel like we can’t discuss certain issues with our family and friends; we think they wouldn’t understand. So, we keep hiding ourselves. It’s getting harder and harder, but we still keep trying to appear different from who we are. 

Aurora Mazzoldi - Genuine conversations (detail of the acrylic painting “Mother 4 - The Possibilities”)
Aurora Mazzoldi; Genuine conversations (detail of the acrylic painting “Mother 4—The Possibilities”)

Eventually, however, we feel a sense of emptiness. The superficiality, the need to always wear the same mask, end up boring us. Even if we could have genuine conversations with friends, we have accustomed them to joking, without ever going in depth. We’re afraid of being boring, too serious. We’re afraid to express emotions, to have deeper contact with relatives and friends. Their criticism let us feel ashamed. So, we can’t start genuine conversations.

They are also afraid to accept emotions.

What if they have the same problem we do? Maybe they’re afraid to discover themselves, to go deep. Perhaps they’re afraid of our criticism. It’s easy — and gives us a great feeling of power — to joke about those who open their souls. We can show how superior we are. We have the same concerns, but the mask we wear doesn’t. So, we can believe that we are our mask.

The game of showing oneself superior

In this way, the game goes on. We can feel superior and force the other to stay at a superficial level. The other can do the same. The result? We are both superior, but we neglect ourselves and our needs. We live to show our masks.

Yet, when people show up as they are, we appreciate them. If they take off their masks, if they speak on a deep level, if they begin genuine conversations, we appreciate them. If they show themselves as they are, we accept more of what they say. We find it difficult to attack them. We become ashamed of our superficiality.

Is there a solution? Can we attempt to open ourselves? We can always close ourselves off again (many of us are well-trained in that). We can start joking (or mocking) and being superficial again if the other person does not accept our attempt to open up.

The Inner Observer is a site for genuine conversations.

You can share opinions, comments, and experiences on the “Introspective Questions” page.

There, you will find a form to fill with your experiences.