Can’t remember where I had come across this term but it had kind of got stuck in the mind so just googled it. And there actually is a term like ‘psychological nudity’! While there is no definition for it yet… here is what it means:
A state of mental and emotional honesty. When all pretense, prejudice, expectations, bravado, etc. are removed, and all that is left is the bare mind. Pure thought (not necessarily pure as in good) is more readily accomplished when one is psychologically nude. Note that psychological nudity has nothing to do with the amount of clothing one is (or is not) wearing; it is a mental state.
Psychological Nudity is a book by Michael Savage, a very radical talk show host in US. Supposed to have very extreme views about everything. But this post is not about Michael Savage. It is about psychological nudity as a concept.
I think the way we have been conditioned… while it is a strict no no to be nude in public, we are even more afraid of being mentally nude in public. Because that entails showing our raw thoughts… good or bad and the repurcussions. It could possibly be construed as a sign of weakness and leveraged or it could be considered as “this person is too emotional and perhaps not the right person… whether for a relationship, job or doing business with”. So we most likely put even more layers of psychological clothing to hide our nudity. It is that dark space of our mind far removed from our active mind that we don not want to venture into that space. Because just like physical nudity.. even psychological nudity can be ugly.
Now here comes the crux of the post. Every singular brand of lifestyle and accessories spends billions of dollars in wooing the consumer to look good and feel good and is the case with physical appearance… it is very shallow. Look fair… look wrinkleless… smell good.. have great hair… be fashionable. It is always about appearances. Now there is nothing wrong in that at all. In a 24 hour day, the only time we are likely to be psychological nude is when we are alone. That is perhaps the only time when our soul will be bare so there is absolutely no point in catering to that nudity to make it look good.
But inner beauty is the real thing isn’t it? It is a big time cliche but it holds true. It is a tag that is usually used when one wants to say the person is not so great in physical appearance.
I read a very powerful statement this morning in Santosh Desai’s weekly column CITY CITY BANG BANG. To quote – “We want to live as tourists in our own life; the rain forces us to participate in the reality of the world we live in”.
Brilliant insight into the world of today. Life for us has become a 3N/4Ds vacation where we want to cover everything in the iternary and head back the next holiday. And anything that becomes uncomfortable, is a destination that is given a miss.
I believe there is an immense opportunity for brands here. Brands that can help us uncover all the layers that we have put on to hide the psychological nudity and bring it out in the open. Take a break from the whistlestop tour of life and stop for a moment or two to actually smell the roses. And no.. the spas and spiritual holidays are not the answer. Nor is the Vipassana programs… though Vipasanna as an experience that every individual must go through once in their life time. I have not been there but hell.. one day I will.
In this day and age of total branding – head to toe plus all the acessories and the trappings of so called success, any brand that can help an individual unbrand himself or herself is bound to succeed. Hold conversation with the individual and not individual as part of the masses. People may not agree but there is that nude self in all of us that is craving to bare itself… go beyond the shallowness of the world we are in… Remove the physical appearance tags and what is left? your true self… not encumbered by what the world thinks about you.. but what you think about yourself.
This post is probably incomplete and would continue when the thought train leaves this station…