The role stress and how Meditation and Mindfulness can help to deal with it

How many different roles have you happened to play today? And how many did you play yesterday? How about in your life? I guess the answer is many. It is just impossible not to play roles in our life. It could be the role of a mother, the role of the work we do, the role of friend, wife, husband, son, nephew and so on and so forth. All these roles can at times create some tension and disharmony within ourselves. Let’s see how and let’s see how we can deal with it.

The problem is not normally the role we play, the problem is the identification with the role itself.  When we strongly believe that we are the role we play and we have our fixed views and our expectations on how the role should be played as, we start creating tension within ourselves and we are self-imprisoning ourselves inside these views and expectations. That is not healthy at all and does not allow ourselves to freely express what we really are. It is like constantly wearing a mask and never show our true face to the world.  

The practice of Mindfulness and Meditation will allow to become much clearer on this distinction between the role and the person performing the role. Their practice will help to dis-identify and realize that we are more than a particular role; the person is neither the mask nor the role. Of course with this dis-identification from the role, the stress that comes from the identification starts to dissipate and we will feel lighter, more refreshed and with more humour about what we do. It takes time to see how badly we are identified with roles but as soon as we start seeing it, all the bonds we have to these roles will start loosen up. We just need patience and perseverance and little by little a sudden sense of freedom will be experienced. 

In the course of our life we can easily become addicted or victims of our roles. I think of a very successful sport person who is enjoying very much his role of  a winner. Of course, time might come when winning will not be anymore possible and that might create inner dissatisfaction, stress or tension. If the person is not able to see that he or she is more than just a sport person, he or she will become a victim of his or her own belief. The most important victory is to find our point of true freedom and that is to be totally free from the roles, the views and the expectations we have of them and finally to gain harmony in anything we do. We need to work consciously if we want to gain this freedom, we need to be willing to look into the pain that results from identification and be willing to start loosening up the bonds we have with our roles. Once that has been achieved, we can start playing all sort of roles in a very different way. More harmoniously and, certainly, by having much more fun. The mask is down and we can show what we really are, we ca express our real self without worrying too much about fixed ideas, fixed views and unnatural expectations. 

Again, Meditation and Mindfulness will assist us in meeting that space where the split between the person and the role happens. One has just to try it out and explore it. I am more than sure that nobody has ever regretted it.