Embracing our inherent hypocrisy is an unlikely path to unlocking authenticity.
Contradictions weave through the fabric of my existence.
Within seconds of telling my kids to stop a certain annoying behavior, like chewing with their mouth open or throwing their clothes on the floor for instance, I find myself doing the same thing.
Very few of my daily actions align with my deepest values. I’m still figuring out exactly what I believe and how that changes the way I behave in the world.
I have the best of intentions though.
My passion for sustainability and my concerted effort to care for the environment feels pulverized the minute I click “purchase” on my Amazon cart, but I still carry on toward a greener lifestyle with tiny conscious steps.
With all my heart, I want to stand for the oppressed, work for justice, and serve the planet and my fellow humans with the resources and abilities I’ve been given. I want to walk with integrity, confidence, and compassion and I wake every morning with this purpose coursing like a river through my veins.
However, as the day wears on, I feel like I’ve morphed into some sort of two-headed monster.
I don’t want to belittle myself, but my incongruities are glaring, laughable really. I could start a lip service business.
Phony and fraud could be appropriate labels, but if I let imposter syndrome boss me around it will eventually smother me with all my shame and secrets. I will stay silent and stay stuck in cycles of negativity and impossibility.
The map of my inner and outer being doesn’t match up, I say one thing and often do another. So what? Does this mean we are untrustworthy liars?
In the dance of our contradictions, let’s not forget- our hypocrisy once feared a demon can be a healing force, a guide nudging us to hold the tension within ourselves. It reminds me to lower the bar and provides a surefire defense against perfectionism, paving the way for my creativity to flourish.
Our hypocrisy acts as a kind of fertilizer then as it sprinkles fresh humility over the soil of our humanity once again. Who among us doesn’t harbor secrets or habits they wish they could change overnight?
We dread being exposed, haunted by the eerie echo ‘if they only knew.’ None of us are who we say we are or appear to be. We sure are trying though.
When I confess my compassionate lies, eco-friendly consumerism, and confident masquerades, I find not fakery but a tapestry of reality.
The hypocrisy is humorous and heart-breaking, and I’m committed to learning to navigate my multiplicity and stay humble in this paradoxical world.