It was when I first started working that I noticed the personalities of my colleagues who smoked: they all seemed to project this air of cool confidence, like they belonged to a special club. My dad stopped smoking quite early, so it wasn’t until a friend revealed to me that he smoked for stress-relief that the contradiction hit me. I naïvely thought: why were all these stressed-out people trying so hard to look cool?
There’s so many ways that modern living makes us choose inauthenticity and cover up how we’re really doing. Because some days, it really is super hard to ‘make it happen’. We’re professionals, but not machines. Our energy, emotional state, resilience, sense of self can all fluctuate for so many reasons and we have to really respect that as part of being human.
The real truth is that when someone courageously admits they’re struggling or they made a mistake or they don’t know how to do something, we all breathe a sigh of relief. We all lay down the masks we’ve been wearing. Because we can all relate to what they’re going through.
Doesn’t it sound cooler to be authentic, chef?