How important is appearance to you?

For me, it used to be that appearance was pretty high on my list. Brought up to look neat and tidy, not to look scruffy, I was taught to take pride in how I look. Moving up the social ladder, I see how it became even more important to me – dressing to impress, looking refined and elegant, choosing only the finest quality clothes.

For a while, I cringed to admit it. It was an uncomfortable truth. And now I can laugh about it. That was the mask I wore. It’s how my personality wanted to be seen. It is not who I am.

Travelling in Peru, in the mud and rain, wearing the same clothes day and night, my accommodation – a tent, a cave – failing to provide the luxury of a shower or hairdryer, I remember a moment when I judged myself and thought what a sorry sight I must look. Of course, the truth is that adventurers do not look neat and tidy, refined and elegant – sometimes their hair gets messy and they may even get dirty fingernails!

What I learned from this experience was that what we see on the surface is simply that – and often it’s an illusion. What lies within is what matters, not what appears on the surface. This applies not only to people, but also to events in the world. We can look to see the significance of things by meditating, opening our heart and asking what we are being shown.

Like you, I am multi-faceted – and, when I am who I am, I can be who I choose in the moment. I can be the lady, the adventurer, the slob, the bohemian, the professional woman, the mother, the child who wants to play…and so much more.

I’m no longer settling for a mask. It’s time to wear my inner finery!

How is it for you? Who are you without the status of your job, your house, your car, the size of your trinkets?

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