How many times have you ever ready for an interview, a gathering with a new client, or a presentation and you get the rallying calls to: ‘just be yourself’, ‘be authentic’, ‘show those who you actually are’ and ‘be completely honest’? It reflects our infective agent existence wherever ‘public privacy’ is that the norm. It’s another a part of the growing social revolution to ‘let it all suspend out’. i might counsel that nothing may be away from the proper factor to try and do.
My comments don’t seem to be only for impact or to be debatable, though they are doing fly con to current knowledge. Instead, they’re impressed by Associate in Nursing typically underappreciated scholar, Julius Winfield Erving Goffman, a Canadian social scientist and author and one in all the foremost cited authors of books within the humanities sitting with physicist, philosopher and even a lot of quoted than analyst. He has influenced abundant of what we have a tendency to currently consider granted within the fields of impression management, however we have a tendency to frame our context and rituals in social interaction and teams. impressed by his works, I add caution.
Reasons why being yourself is blemished
Let’s cross-check the analysis. for example, take those who area unit high on self-monitoring, a temperament preference outlined as ‘active construction of public selves to attain social ends’. A extremely cited study by Ajay Mehra, Martin Kilduff and Daniel Brass, found that “chameleon-like high self-monitors” were a lot of possible than true-to-themselves “low self-monitors” to occupy central positions in social networks, that affords them bigger levels of social capital and influence. along these characteristics predict individual work performance.
There is additionally sizeable proof to counsel that individuals UN agency gift themselves as heat and competent area unit a lot of possible to be liked and presented higher levels of position. what is more, those that act with higher levels of confidence area unit given bigger credence within the eyes of others.
Thus, it seems that simply being yourself has some distinct drawbacks. In fact, naive credibility might do a lot of hurt than sensible. It presumes you recognize UN agency you are; it puts the main target on the intrapersonal instead of the discourse interaction; it looks to line up you up for a egotistical injury.
Read the space
Goffman additionally believed that social exchanges area unit styles of rituals and these happen in a very set context. Here he argues that we must always study “situations and their men” instead of “men and their situations”. Thus, it reframes social exchanges in terms of social, reciprocal processes instead of strictly on individual motives and inclinations. we will elaborate by exploitation 3 of Goffman’s more ideas: ritual interactions, face work, and therefore the notion that we’ve got a front stage and back stage to our lives.
Rituals: the chance that every social encounter could be a variety of ritual, a series of prescribed or formal activities, sets the stage for specific and implicit norms. ‘Being yourself’ will upset the rituals and should produce disappointment and anxiety. It’s known as a social blooper. Associate in Nursing example may be your mobile ringing in Associate in Nursing interview. little question there’ll be a right away loss of face, that tarnishes the positive social values an individual effectively claims for themselves.
Face work is that the continual social negotiation of private standing inside this ritualised context. after we reach this social dance, we have a tendency to maintain face for each ourselves however a lot of significantly others, UN agency area unit a part of the ritual. for example, shaking hands (or not in some countries) is an element of the ritual context of an honest begin. however after we fail it affects the full context, individuals become embarrassed on our behalf. That’s why we have a tendency to all cringe once the TV character, David goose, from The workplace makes a social gaff. He’s crossed the road.
Front stage and back stage work: Brushing teeth is typically back stage work, activity in Associate in Nursing interview or presentation is front stage. Being your naïve self will typically be like teeth cleansing publicly. one thing best avoided.
Take the center ground
It may not be natural for you to be high on self-monitoring or to ‘fake it till you create it‘. i’m not proposing that we have a tendency to all become sociopaths: even supposing they’re pretty sensible at presenting themselves. Neither, do you have to betray your ideals and beliefs. the purpose is simple: being yourself, lauding naive credibility, could be a potential formula for disaster (in the worst case) and maybe some disappointment. Not only for you however additionally the individuals around you. Instead I propose a twist, and act from the position of set credibility, which suggests consider the context et al, not simply you.
I conclude with a quote from William Shakspere.
“All the world’s a stage,
And all the men and women merely players.
They have their exits and their entrances,
And one man in his time plays many parts”.