Playing games is fun.
Games like Uno, Monopoly, and Guess Who—games we can play together with our friends and family.
They bring us closer and remind us that screens can be a distraction. They encourage us to converse with the people we love while making memories.
As we grow, we come to find there are more sinister games that grown adults play. They can recklessly throw around words and emotions, lie and deceive.
For a while, my brain was wrapped around the “why.” My ego was obsessed with wanting to learn about the type of people who played games, wanting to figure out why their brains worked this way—why they would make up an entire story for months on end.
Who hurt them so badly they felt the need to disguise themselves? Fumbling over their lies and trapped into corners, they would manipulate and change their storyline, becoming angry when you exposed the truth.
This behavior is exhausting and draining.
Authentic people are often drawn to these characters because they can appear confident and larger than life. They may even be narcissists or have narcissistic tendencies.
Authentic people tend to be empathetic. We feel too much, even if it is “fake.”
We don’t know the first thing about these games, other than we are usually victims in them. We don’t realize it until, sometimes, it’s too late. We are already invested, or we have already been burned.
Too many of these encounters can break a person, but I am here to beg you: please, don’t let it.
You see, this world is filled with plenty of fake: fake pictures and filters, fake food, fake love, fake friendship, fake healthcare, fake happiness.
The world doesn’t need anything else that is fake.
The world needs more healers, lovers, dreamers, artists, and weirdos. It needs love, light, and real human emotion. Limiting ourselves—our realness—only hurts those around us.
Allowing ourselves to be authentic gives those around us permission to do the same.
If it doesn’t, those are not your people. Your people will never judge or question you or make you feel small. They will not lie to you, manipulate you, or make you feel like you are walking on eggshells—afraid to speak your truth.
We cannot help people self-reflect or hold themselves accountable for their actions if they are not ready for help. The best thing to do? Mind your business, and focus on you.
Remind yourself: you are a real human with real emotions.
Others would rather stick to their self-told narrative instead of seeking their own inner truth. Is that someone worth entertaining, even for a second?
The next time you feel ashamed, confused, or belittled by someone you thought was authentic, I ask you to do this:
>> Isolate yourself from them as quickly as you can.
>> Boundary up!
>> Sing and dance a little louder in the car or the comfort of your own home—not a soul is watching.
>> Take a long, hot bath with candles.
>> Walk outside for as long as you possibly can, somewhere new or your favorite place.
>> Talk with a friend—a real friend—who sees and understands your heart and reminds you how easy you are to love and be around.
>> Paint, write, draw, build some shit.
>> Travel, alone (I cannot stress this enough).
>> Stretch as much as you possibly can.
>> Breathe, deeply.
What are some things that make you feel you? That reminds you of your strong beating heart—filled with real stories, real love, real light?
If you are having a hard time answering those questions, maybe it’s time to play a game of Uno, Monopoly, or Guess Who.
After all, real life begins when you stop taking it too seriously in the first place.