Everyone has a mask. Everyone puts them on.
Picture yourself in a party or social setting. Are you the person that gladhands and smiles, seemingly talking to everyone? I bet you are wearing a mask! I find these people so interesting to watch in a social or networking atmosphere. They are so confident in themselves (or seem to be) but you know what? They're likely forcing themselves to shake hands, smile, strike up conversation and are actually trembling inside with the fear of being rejected.
I'll be honest, these types of mask-wearers make me laugh and shake my head. Why not just be yourself? Be warm, be inviting. If you're having an off day and just don't really feel like being there, don't force it. Be true to who you are, and I bet you dollars to donuts that you will make more real connections and lasting relationships than the gladhander who isn't being authentic.
Take your mask off.
I know it makes you really vulnerable, and I know that in and of itself is a super scary thing, but it is so necessary to take off your mask and be who you are.
After all, your clients want to know you, want to trust you and establish a relationship with you. They don't want the gladhander full of false hope and promises. They want you, as real as you can be.
Let your mask fall off, and be comfortable in your own skin.
Masks also show us the true colors of others, so try not to be too concerned when their masks fall off and the enchantment ends. People, relationships, connections will come and go. If the mask falls off and you find yourself less than impressed, just move on. There will be someone there to fill that space who doesn't wear a mask and truly wants to have an authentic relationship with you.