"Authenticity is the daily practice of letting go of who we think we’re supposed to be and embracing who we are."
- Brené Brown
When we’re being authentic, it means we’re being our true selves. We speak our truth and share our gifts, even if it means ridicule, disapproval or even persecution.
Authenticity comes from our core. It’s our soul, our personality, our talents all wrapped up in a distinctive package. Living authentically means to allow this uniqueness to grow and blossom, instead of fearing or fighting against it.
We can’t live our lives authentically when we’re seeking approval from others, hiding our true feelings or pretending to be someone we’re not. The cost is too great.
When we align with our divine purpose, express ourselves truthfully, and share our gifts, we feel content. Life flows. Synchronicities occur. We don’t need approval from others, because we like ourselves.
Why is it so hard to be our self?
Unfortunately, our world is filled with inauthenticity of all kinds. It’s hard to know what’s real sometimes. Phony people, fake food and false facts flood our lives. In fact, at times we don’t even know ourselves. And, maybe, some of us, never really have.
To begin with, many of us grew up in an environment where we’re weren’t encouraged to be our self, or we were criticized and judged when we were. We developed low self-worth and learned to be small and quiet for fear of ridicule and rejection. Ultimately, we ran away from ourselves. By pretending to be someone else, we forgot who we were.
When we’re not authentic, we give away our power. We feel anxious, fearful, anger and shame. It takes courage to put ourselves out there. People can be very cruel and demoralizing. In addition, at times, there are restrictions we have to abide by. We play roles and we wear masks. So, it’s imperative, to take an inventory and reflect on how authentic our lives really are.
As in all good relationships, getting to know ourselves takes nurturing, love, patience and time. But, when we do, we will be happier, have greater self-worth and certainly be more enjoyable to be around.
7 Tips to Living a More Authentic Life:
Go within – Meditation, being in nature, journaling, going to therapy will help you discover your beliefs, purpose, gifts and who you truly are.
Be aware – Live in the present, go with the flow, and trust your instinct. Be aware of your responses and how you feel.
Speak your truth – Your tone matters. Speak with love. Express your gifts creatively, no matter what others think.
Be vulnerable – Feel your emotions and be brave enough to share them with others. Breaking down walls creates more satisfying relationships.
Eliminate negativity – Be around positive people who encourage you. Carefully, choose what you watch, read, listen to, or engage in.
Take risks – Perfection isn’t the goal. Taking action is. Be brave and don’t worry about the outcome. Dance to the rhythm of your heart!
Be kind – It’s a journey not a destination. Encouragement helps you grow. Punishment stops the flow.
Intuitively, we know the truth, but sometimes we get confused and feel stuck. Being our self isn’t always easy. It takes courage, persistence and self-awareness. But, when we are, it’s pure freedom and that’s certainly worth living for.