How do you live authentically? And how do you go about creating a life you love? And how do we know what that life will look like?
Like everything the quest for authenticity has become muddied by overuse of the latest ‘buzz’ word. It’s unfortunate because I love the word and concept. However I’m wary of using it because, well, everyone else is! It’s left me questioning with what intent? Do they even know what it means? And are they really being authentic?
I’m no expert, but I see ‘living authentically’ as removing the mask so many of us hide behind in an attempt to fit in, fly under the radar or to stand out from the pack. It’s about being our true self – not the self that others want us to be, or who we think they want us to be. It’s being comfortable in our own skin.
Authenticity is about being ‘true’ to ourselves.
It’s about paying your self some respect, cutting out the bullshit, saying what you mean, meaning what you say, and fronting up as YOUR SELF – warts and all.
It’s when you finally start living by these ‘guidelines’ that you FINALLY start creating the life you love!
As a reformed people pleaser, I’ve spent majority of my life trying to be someone else. Either the person I thought others wanted me to be or the person they wanted me to be. Be it bosses, friends, family, men…it was all the same. I was so desperate for approval, to be liked, to be told I’d done a good job. I was a success but deep down I was a mess. Depression, chronic anxiety, fatigue, and living in a constant state of turmoil, swimming against the tide and in total conflict with myself.
As soon as I sat down and analysed my own values system (admittedly after a number of burnouts), I recognised the people pleasing rut I was stuck in, and I’ll be completely honest with you, it was a bloody hard habit to break! At the crux of the issue was deep-seated self-esteem issues stemming from childhood bullying and a trauma, as well as the fact that I associated my own self-worth with work, hard work.
I mean, if I wasn’t good at my work then who was I?
And there you have it. THE question…Who was I?
The last few years have been an intense period of self-exploration and discovery, during which I have rediscovered who I am.
I am happy to say that I now know who I am and I actually like myself, warts and all.
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