In my work as a practitioner, one of the most common challenges I see clients face is getting past the “good girl/good boy” conditioning that they have adopted, often since before they can remember. Many of us learn that extreme displays of emotion, sexuality, boundaries and the like are inappropriate and from a young age learn how to hide, supress or ignore any thing otherwise. Clients may come to me with a particular challenge in their life and we soon realise that one of the main reasons they can’t address the challenge is that they are fearful and resistant to actually speaking their truth, especially if it may potentially upset or disappoint someone in their lives. They can’t let go of the good girl/good boy mask.
It makes me incredibly sad when I think about how we often perform a version of ourselves that we think we are supposed to be, and in the process often loose our boundaries, become disconnected from our true desires and passion and don’t even know what our true yes or no is.
I can certainly relate to that. I quickly learned that praise came from being good, successful, nice etc, was flexible with my opinions, would often allow other’s preferences to override mine, and would say yes even if I meant no in order to avoid discomfort. I still catch myself doing this now sometimes, when I don’t have the courage to stay in my truth. Taking off the good girl mask requires honesty, courage, truth-telling & a willingness to grow; it is perhaps the most important work if we are to live a self-loving, authentic & powerful life.
It also doesn’t serve others to stay in this mask. When we own our truth, we show others what matters to us, how we want to be treated, what we like and what we don’t. It can fast track your relationships and really liberate you into living and authentic and truthful life.
Below is an excerpt from Chapter 6 of the “Ignite Your Power” manual, as part of the online course by Chantelle Raven. If this topic resonates with you, I encourage you to consider taking the whole course. It is full of powerful teachings around shedding the masks, facing your fears and freeing yourself from past conditioning in order to be in your true power and to live authentically as yourself in every moment.
– Erin xx
Persona, Ego and Shadow
Our ‘Persona’ is the psychological clothing that sits between who we really are and the people we relate to. It’s how we’d like to be seen in the world. Carl Jung described the Persona as being comprised of all the ‘masks’ we put on, usually to gain love, respect and approval.
The more aware we are of our Persona, the more aware we can become of those parts of ourselves we have deemed unlovable and unacceptable. The Ego & Persona come from the same source—that which we are conscious of and know about ourselves. The Shadow is the opposite—that of which we are unconscious of and which we do not know about ourselves.
The Good Girl/Boy Mask
We all have a conditioned Good Girl/Boy Persona, which can be a very difficult mask to take off. The Good Girl/Boy is the one who smiles when they feel angry, says ‘Ok’ when they really want to say ‘Fuck off’, bites their tongue instead of saying what they need or what they really think, always does the right thing, says ‘Yes’ when they don’t want to do something, and says ‘No’ when they do want to do something but are afraid of being ‘bad’.
Often it is easier to be the Good Girl/Boy; the one everyone can rely on, the one that doesn’t rock the boat or speak out, the one that does everything that’s expected. The Good Girl/Boy quietly has other dreams for their life but doesn’t share them out of fear of imposing, putting other people out, losing love or being rejected.
It is easy to get attached to being perfect or some version of the Good Girl/Boy that is society’s ideal woman or man. The funny thing is, that no matter how hard we try to be the Good Girl/Boy—or some ideal, perfect person—we will never get there, because this doesn’t exist! We are human. We have feelings and our feelings are not always going to please others. We have desires and needs which, when not honoured, will always sneak out.
To break free of the Good Girl/Boy mask, you need to stop smiling and nodding on some days and stomp instead!
You need to get rid of your how-to manual that beckons the praises of others, stop clinging to approval from others, panicking about what others would think of you and risk being a bad girl/boy! You need to learn to BE HONEST. You need to learn to love, accept and forgive yourself for being human, even when you have allowed cruel words and actions to rush past angry, contorted lips. Even when you have lied, sneaked, made mistakes, or knew better than the way you acted, you are still loveable! Even when you’re not a Good Girl/Boy, you are still loveable.
To reach the place of total acceptance is to practice compassion for our own humanness.
No one wants to be that Good Girl/Boy all the time and nobody wants to deal with a Good Girl/Boy all the time. The bad girl/boy out of shadow is an Empowered Being who is interesting, changeable and unpredictable. So just say what you really think sometimes. Say ‘No’ or ‘Yes’ for nobody else other than your own self-interest. Walk away from a situation or person if it doesn’t serve you, in order to be true to yourself. Learn that you matter more than keeping up the appearance of how you want others to see you, or how you present yourself on social media.
From a Good Girl/Boy to an Empowered Being
Beyond the Good Girl/Boy is an Empowered Being who does not allow themself to be taken for granted. An Empowered Being has integrated their dark side rather than burying it. This does not mean they are evil or out of integrity, it just means they are alive in the darker, more denser energies of the lower chakras. They claim their safety, sexuality, power, confidence and emotionality. Therefore, Empowered Beings are often known as ‘bad girls/bad boys’ because they are in touch with their desires and follow them. They eat what they want, dance the way they want to, say what they mean and live their life by their own rules, not those of others.
The transformational journey from the Good Girl/Boy shadow into an Empowered Being who owns their darkness, is one of courage.
Here are seven main situations where the Good Girl/Boy and Empowered Being differ. We go into more detail on this in the online Ignite Your Power course:
1. A Good Girl/Boy conforms; an Empowered Being lives their life
2. 2. A Good Girl/Boy suppresses their sexuality; an Empowered Being embraces their sexuality
3. A Good Girl/Boy is afraid to act; an Empowered Being moves confidently towards what they desire
4. A Good Girl/Boy withholds; an Empowered Being goes for it
5. A Good Girl/Boy puts others first & finds it difficult to receive; an Empowered Being puts themself first when needed & receives with Grace
6. A Good Girl/Boy does & says the ‘right thing’; an Empowered Being does & says what feels right
7. A Good Girl/Boy submits; an Empowered Being surrenders to and follows their desires
A life Lived As An Empowered Being
What is a life lived as an Empowered Being? What does it mean to embody this energy?
Your emotional body is felt aaalllll the way without shame. You own and feel your sexual energy and are unafraid to be seen in it. You are committed to keeping your heart open no matter what. Your heart sings and directs the day, gets you up in the morning, is compassionate when there is pain and comforts you at the end of the day with what you cherish most.
It is a life lived that allows you to follow your ‘Yes’ and honour your ‘No’, and to love yourself enough to receive the love and respect you deserve. It is a life lived that harmonises your desires with where your energy is directed, honours your needs as equal to others, and when needed, puts your needs above others. It’s a life that has you toss back your head and shout ‘YES!’ to life, feel a lightness and joy of Being that is infectious, and feel a glow in your heart that can light up the world.
The Empowered Being lives their life continuously spiralling through the circle of life with both vulnerability and strength, which expresses through them in varying degrees, every day. The softness comes in as they speak from their sensitive, vulnerable heart. The strength arrives assertively and boldly when they have to set a boundary and call on courage. They are unafraid to be naughty and disapproved of. They are the ones breaking society’s ‘no, no’s, expressing themselves authentically and following the desires and wisdom of their body. They would rather follow their bliss and joy than fit in and look the part.
Excerpt taken from Chapter 6 of the “Ignite Your Power” manual, as part of the online course by Chantelle Raven.