Letting Go For The Authentic Self

Letting Go For The Authentic Self

Letting Go For The Authentic Self

authenticityDid you know that authenticity is inextricably linked to happiness? To be authentic is to feel at home in your body, accepted into a particular group, and to feel true to our sense of values. It is a kind of confidence that doesn’t come from attaining something outside of ourselves, but knowing deeply we are enough whatever our particular feelings, needs, or skills are and that we add to the greater whole of life and matter. We can be true to our own personality, spirit, or character despite external pressures.

Authenticity is one of the most important ingredients in creating a healthy and sustainable relationship. Yet it can also be one of the most challenging to practice on a day-to-day basis. Why? the answer is simple: fear. We fear that if we showed up as we truly are—saying, doing, and feeling the real things that are going on within us without augmenting or censoring ourselves in any way—that others might disconnect from us, feel upset with us, or even leave us.

“Authenticity is the daily practice of letting go of who we think we are supposed to be and embracing who we actually are.”
—Brené Brown

Authenticity: The Ultimate Practice of Letting Go

Brené Brown, who has spent the past ten years studying authenticity, writes in her book, The Gifts of Imperfection: “Authenticity is the daily practice of letting go of who we think we are supposed to be and embracing who we actually are.” Choosing authenticity means:

  • cultivating the ability to be imperfect
  • allowing ourselves to be vulnerable, and
  • setting boundaries.

If we aren’t being authentic with our deeper feelings and needs, then we can’t establish healthy boundaries. 

One of the things I personally practice and share with my students that enhances authenticity is to choose “discomfort over discontentment.” For example, when fear arises, it can feel uncomfortable and to avoid discomfort we can distract or push away how we really feel and what we really need—but this is ultimately never satisfying.

There is a risk involved when we put ourselves out there personally and professionally. However, if we don’t honor our true feelings and needs, they will eventually leak out when we sometimes least expect it and cause harm to oneself and others. The more we practice authenticity, the easier it becomes to live and lead from this place.

Source: https://www.mindful.org/4-questions-foster-authentic-self/

Where Is My Authentic Self?

Where Is My Authentic Self?

Where Is My Authentic Self?

Psychologist Andrea Mathews walks us through the beginning of the discovery process – as we come to understand that we are not who we thought we were …

“I’m not myself,” “I don’t know why I do that!” “I didn’t mean it!” “I don’t know why I’m crying!” These are all statements made when we become slightly aware that we are out of touch with the authentic Self. Self with a capital “S.” It has a capital “S” because it isn’t the same as the identity, which we often refer to as self.

What is “The Identity”?

Identity vs authentic selfThe identity is a mask and costume that we have worn since we introjected the thinking, feeling and behaviors projected onto us by parents, caregivers, family, religion and society. That identity can act, it can think, it can even feel. It can do that because we have moved the sense of self into a mask and costume that we have worn so hard and for so long that we think it is who we are. But it isn’t who we are—it is who they needed us to be. It is who we became in order to belong to them. And we think that it is our survival.

But all along, while we are living in that identity, the authentic Self is coming forth through the small cracks in the identity. Perhaps we feel this as a deep longing for something, or perhaps we surprise ourselves with something we say or do, or perhaps we just slowly begin to look deeper and find new aspects that have previously been undiscovered. When it surprises us, we often very quickly stuff it back into the unconscious. We do that because it rocks our boat. We do that because it has said or done something that makes us temporarily aware that we are not happy with our lives, with our relationships, our careers, or our own behaviors.

Why Do We Abandon The Authentic Self?

We come here as a Self. But we are born, most of us, into families who need us to be something. They need us to be something, something very commonly other than who we actually are. They may be projecting their own unresolved stuff onto us, so that, for example, we might be “asked,” through this projection, to play bad guy to their good guy role. That would be because they feel such shame attached to being “bad” that they need to believe that they are never bad. So, someone else has to live that out for them. That’s just one example of many. But all the while we are playing the identity, after we have introjected and identified with that projection, we are not living out the authentic Self.

And all that time the authentic Self is trying to find little ways to show itself to us. It wants us to come to know it intimately. It means to give us the peace of congruence. It means to show us who we are so that we can become that in our daily lives. It means to point out our original thoughts, our original beliefs and our genuine feelings and behaviors. It means to finally bring us home to our own souls (a term that can be seen as liberally synonymous with Self).

How Do We Reconnect With The Authentic Self?

We look for the Self within. We look for it in earnest desires, in genuine emotions, in original thoughts, in behaviors that have always wanted to manifest. We don’t find it in other people’s opinions, social or cultural belief systems, social mores, familial agendas or other external data. We find it by looking for it within.

So, the journey may begin with inner dialogue, in which the identity begins a conversation with the authentic Self. Letter writing to and from the Self, poetry to and from the Self, artwork that comes from the Self, or just taking note of genuine emotions that one has normally and previously repressed. The journey is a quest for the Holy Grail of the Self. It is a deeply spiritual journey, for it intends to unite us with our own wholeness. And those who take this journey are challenged to get the deeper meaning from difficult emotions, to draw boundaries with people who are toxic, to nurture and care for the Self even when the external rules of play would say that they should bow to another agenda. It is both the most challenging and most rewarding of all possible journeys.

Source: Andrea Mathews

Increasing Authenticity

Increasing Authenticity

Increasing Authenticity

serene confidenceAuthentic people respond to their intrinsic motives. They exercise autonomy, dismiss introjected regulations, and choose among the extrinsic motives available to them. Their thoughts, beliefs, words, and actions originate deep from within and are true and secure enough to resist destructive external pressures. The result is a genuine, quiet, deep, vitalizing, serene, and lasting fulfillment and confidence without anxiety, self-doubt, or other sources of stress.

Authentic people choose authentic alternatives. These include: wisdom, well-founded beliefs, valid conclusions, purposeful actions, candortrust, placing needs ahead of wants, knowing when they haveenough, balancing gratification with hedonism, nimble actions, treating others humanely, and establishing symmetrical relationships. We become authentic when he path we choose through life is congruent with who we are.

The alignment essential to an authentic person is illustrated here. Actions aligned with your authentic self are authentic behaviors. Actions misaligned with your authentic self are alien, false, fake, pretentious,stressful, insincere, fraudulent, strained, bogus, phony, and not authentic. This is typical of a person who is misaligned, off balance, stressed, alienated, detached, and faking it. When what you do is fully aligned with who you are, you are an authentic person. Authentic people “do who they are” and enjoy gratification, serenity, success, and significance. Authentic people act with more interest, excitement, and confidence and often demonstrate better performance, persistence, creativity, vitality, self-esteem, and general well-being. Authenticity reduces fearanxietyguilt, and shame.

increase authenticity

Your authentic self is the unique combination of all your qualities including your skills, abilities, interests, talents, limits, insights, experiences, memories, beliefs, purpose, and wisdom. It is the expression of your core values through all your quirks and your strengths. Our authentic nature may best be revealed by how we enjoy playing—by what it is we most enjoy doing simply for our own pleasure—at any age.

Increase the congruence between what you do, and your goalsbeliefs, and values. Pay attention to how you spend your time. Do the activities you spend your time on advance your most important goals? Do your goals reflect your values? Do your values reflect your authentic self? Reappraise your values, beliefs, goals, and actions to improve the congruence.

As people become more authentic they often become more: rational, realistic, intuitive, creative, independent, flexible, able to manage change, willing to accept blame and correct their mistakes, generous,respectful of others, fair, and cooperative. This congruence earns the trust of others.

Source: http://www.emotionalcompetency.com/authenticself.htm

Habits For Cultivating Authenticity

Habits For Cultivating Authenticity

Habits For Cultivating Authenticity

When we start the process of “taking back our kingdom”, we face many obstacles to creating a life which truly expresses the unique contribution we have to offer. One of the most frustrating obstacles is that we have many, many habits in place which support our false self. The process of reorganising life from the ground up must include a rebuilding of our unexamined habits. This list, while far from comprehensive, will help you to start this process and keep it on track.

“When you are authentic, you create a certain energy… people want to be around you because you are unique.” – Andie MacDowell

Journal natureThere’s a unique and unmistakable power in knowing, becoming, and being your real self. Those who are truly happy in life understand this power and vehemently stick to their authentic selves.

To be authentic is not to allow a situation or person to change you, unless for the better. Personal authenticity is firmly in place, regardless of who is in your company. Sure, your style of communication and how you present yourself (e.g. formal or informal speech) may change, but not your actual core.

There is undoubtedly an authenticity problem in society, as many of you have likely seen and experienced. For example, one survey found that nearly half of all people feel they need to “fake it” at work (a belief that only adds to an already stressful working environment.) When we walk into a place of business to purchase something, it’s commonplace to experience a sense of doubt about the person doing the selling. “What’s in it for them?” we ask ourselves.

 

While we may not be able to change someone else’s authenticity, we can certainly change ours. Feeling the need to “put on a mask” is exhausting, stressful, and (often) deceitful. It’s also risky – when people feel uncertain about you, they’re more likely to start distrusting anything you do or say.

To be your authentic self requires honesty, vulnerability, and courage – and it’s also incredibly rewarding.

HERE ARE TEN WAYS TO BECOME YOUR MOST AUTHENTIC SELF:

1. WRITE IT DOWN

Jot down what you appreciate and love about yourself, along with what you may need to improve on.Write the names of people you want to spend your time with, and what you’re joyful and passionate about. Breathe this information in, meditate on it, and resolve to be this person. This is the authentic you.

 

2. LEARN TO FEEL COMFORTABLE IN YOUR OWN SKIN

Once you understand and accept your real self, get comfortable with it. Allow self-critical thoughts to naturally dissipate. Forget about comparing yourself to others, including what they may think.

3. LET GO

Release any guilt or self-limiting thoughts. The past is the past – it’s over, done. Be in the moment, present, and at peace with your identity. This process may be gradual, and that’s okay. Breathe, be patient, and your real self will eventually surface.

4. IGNORE THE CYNICS

As you begin to make positive changes in your life, people will start to take notice. Most will look at you with admiration and respect – a few may not. Should you become aware of this cynicism, be mindful, and their pessimism, along with any discomfort you may feel, will inevitably disappear.

being yourself

5. KEEP A JOURNAL

Write down times and places when you felt your authenticity begin to wane – the actions and behaviors (yours and theirs), the situation, your observations, and the outcome. Keep this journal up to date – it will provide valuable insight into certain patterns of thoughts and behavior you may wish to change.

6. PAY ATTENTION TO EVERYONE

It’s too easy to become lazy and overlook other people – don’t make this mistake. Many people have a valuable lesson to teach if we’d only let them. Don’t underestimate the power of observation. Some of the best lessons may come without a word being uttered.

7. PRACTICE ACTIVE LISTENING

Giving your full attention to someone else is a remarkably powerful skill. Active listening is a sign of respect and of your true interest in others, which is a gift in itself. However, it also provides: (1) a stronger bond and level of trust with others, and (2) a fantastic opportunity to learn and grow from their knowledge and experiences.

8. BE KIND

Being your authentic self and living up to your ideals means demonstrating kindness to everyone. Say hello, ask them how they’re doing, and make good eye contact while displaying a genuine smile.

9. ACCEPT CHANGE

Being authentic also means being comfortable with change. Regardless of the circumstances, remain true to your inner core. Be open to self-improvement as well, as there is nothing more authentic than changing for the better.

10. ALIGN YOUR HEART AND PATH

You have one precious life to live. Spend it following your passions and your heart. Remember, the only expectations that truly matter are the ones that you set forth. Follow your real expectations by allowing you heart and life’s journey to walk step-in-step.

Source: https://www.powerofpositivity.com/habits-become-authentic-self