We wear masks to protect ourselves from judgment and vulnerability, but in doing so we lose our true selves. Here's how to find emotional health & humanize the person behind the mask.

Bolster Your Emotional Health By Humanizing Who’s Behind The Mask

May 3, 2022

Why so serious? This quote is uttered by the mischievous menace that torments Gotham in the Batman series that we’ve come to know and love. That’s right: the Joker. Now my friends, the Joker has been around for ages, but never quite like this. 

A new interpretation of the playful villain was brought out by Joaquin Phoenix in the film “Joker.” Haven’t seen it yet? Well, what are you waiting for? Phoenix’s portrayal brought something completely new and heartrending to the table when it comes to emotional health. 

Instead of showing the trickster as an unredeemable villain bent on causing chaos for fun, the Joker is portrayed as a man neglected by the world around him. As a result of the hardships and abuse he endures by those who care little about his emotional health, he inevitably transforms into the comic book character. 

Not only does Phoenix brilliantly portray a man pushed over the edge by those around him, but also as someone forced to wear a hypothetical mask in order to hide that mental damage. In this version of the tale the Joker is not just a simple villain. The TRUE villain is Gotham itself. 

What is Emotional Health?

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Emotional health is a state of well-being in which an individual is able to cope with life’s challenges, build strong relationships, and feel good about themselves. Emotional health is not just the absence of mental illness but also the ability to effectively manage one’s emotions.

There are many factors that contribute to emotional health, including a person’s genetics, environment, and own choices. While some people are naturally more resilient than others, anyone can take steps to improve their emotional health.

How to Know if You're Struggling With Emotional Health

It can be difficult to tell if you're struggling with emotional health. After all, we all go through ups and downs in life. But if you find that your low points are lasting longer than usual or impacting your ability to function in day-to-day life, it may be time to seek help.

Some common signs that you're struggling with emotional health include:

- Feeling numb or disconnected from your emotions

-- Experiencing extreme mood swings

-- Withdrawing from social activities or hobbies that you used to enjoy

-- Having difficulty concentrating or making decisions

-- Sleeping too much or having trouble sleeping

-- Eating too much or not eating enough

-- Abusing drugs or alcohol

If you're experiencing any of these signs, it's important to reach out for help. There are many resources available to help you cope with whatever you're going through. Don't be afraid to ask for help from a friend, family member, therapist, or doctor. Remember, you're not alone.

I recommend listening to this podcast Best of the Emotional Health Core

What Can The Joker Teach Us About Emotional Health? 

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Much like the Joker, many of us are wearing masks nowadays. Well, of course, we are all quite literally wearing masks because of a pandemic, but you get what I mean. Of course, our masks also protect us from our own insecurities

People are wearing masks to protect each other, but at the same time, there are those who don’t agree with that. Some are afraid, and some are just frustrated with the state of the world. Regardless of where you stand, it’s important to recognize the emotional health of yourself and others. It’s easy to be rude when you can’t see someone’s face, but everyone is human. Everyone has feelings. 

No one could have known years ago that we’d be wearing masks when we go out. Suddenly, normal outings are new and unfamiliar. Instead of seeing smiling faces, you are met with the top half of a face. This has led to some unfortunate hatred. 

So, How Can You Bolster Your Emotional Health? 

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The first step is to remember that we’re all in this together. These are hard times, but alienating each other is not going to help. Instead, choose to be a growth-owner. By doing so, you can bring positivity to the world around you while building up your own emotional health. 

As a result of social distancing, we’ve been programmed to see strangers as dangerous. Instead of seeing them as normal people, they’re suddenly villains in the story of our lives. Of course, it’s important to stay safe and following protocols is helpful, but maybe seeing others as villainous is not the solution. 

I know people who are afraid to go outside because of the fear of those who refuse to wear a mask or distance themselves. I’ve also heard from those who believe masks to be a hindrance of their person. Regardless of what you believe, it can be hard to go toe to toe with people who don’t agree with you. But this can actually bolster your emotional health. 

Don’t believe me? Well, go out and try it! Just find someone with a different belief and speak to them as a human being. Always show kindness and ensure they know that you see them as more than just a villain in a story. 

This will not only help you build positive momentum, but relationships as well. Just by humanizing the person behind the mask, you can strengthen your relationships. Stare into the eyes of a neighbor or friend and just start talking! 

Know that one conversation could mean so much to someone. Just think about what could have happened if the Joker had a friend who truly cared about his emotional health

Want To Add Even More Fire To Your Emotional Health Core? 

Want to know where you stand in the five values of life tied to happiness (Your 5 Cores), take this two minute Core Values Quiz to get your core score in the five values of life.

For more gamified habit hacks to build momentum in your life, follow me on IG, FB Group, and Tik Tok.


Will Moore is a gamification, habits and happiness expert.

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