Two simple and helpful questions:
When I am with others, am I free to act as if I was alone?
When I am alone, do I act with the integrity I aim for when I am with others?
This exploration is a help in finding more authenticity, to not blindly act from roles and from trying to impress myself and others, to not feel I have to present a certain image. It helps me find beliefs and inquire into them. And it helps me shift in real time, in the situation, through the question and where attention goes because of the question.
Looking at it in a more technical way, I see that these questions helps bring attention to stories and their corresponding viewpoints and identities, and to what extent there is identification with these.
To what extent am I compelled to try to live up to them? What happens when I take them as what I should be? What happens when I try to live up to them? Who would I be without these stories and identities? Can I find where their reversals are equally true and helpful, maybe in the same or other situations?
Can I find more freedom in how I relate to these stories and identities, choosing among them more fluidly according to what seems most skillful – most kind and wise – in the current situation?
- when with others, as if alone ; when alone, as if with others
- a good guideline
- notice if act as if alone when with others, and if act as with others when alone
- helps us find more authenticitiy, not blindly act from roles + from trying to impress others, present a certain image, find beliefs and inquire into them