Halloween has come and gone, and costumes are put away to haunt and amuse another day. But did you put your mask away?
I am guilty of sometimes hiding my true opinions—it can be scary to be open to the point of vulnerability. At work, I'm often hesitant to say no to tasks or to express obstacles that come up in the midst of projects. At home, holding feelings inside instead of communicating them only makes situations worse.
Instead of keeping things to myself, I try to first determine the root of the problem, then figure out a way to coherently express it to those involved. If I'm late on deadline, I need to tell my editor. If I'm feeling overwhelmed with housework, I need to communicate that to my husband. Assuming my editor will know that sources are not getting back to me, or thinking my husband should just know to pick up a dish rag is unfair.
While I would rather keep on the mask of perfection, I know that I am not perfect, and I need to allow others to help me when I need it. But they'll never know I need help or how to best help me until I tell them.
Do you hold things inside? What helps you to be more open with your co-workers, friends, and family?
Written by: Erika Rose is fourpoints magazine's staff writer. She'd like you to know, for the record, that fourpoints sources always get back to her on time, and her husband is very good at helping around the house.