But really tho, we should all be a little more authentic but it is so much easier said than done. I’m going to share with you my five tips for harnessing authenticity – but first a little about why I think this is so important.
Recently, a friend of mine shared that their elementary school kid asked them if everyone will still “act like themselves” when they go back to school. They explained that their friends were acting “more like themselves” doing online school and via Zoom than they do at school.
I loved hearing this call out – even in elementary school kids start putting on masks to “fit in” and they’re aware of it. We often assume kids are always being themselves and this was a stark reminder that even they cave to society’s pressures. Dwelling on this made me think about my masks – one for work, one for each friend group, one for events.
What would it be like if we could all just be out authentic selves?
Everyone, from the smallest to the tallest, wants to be authentic. Being accepted while being our real selves is the dream. Authenticity is the cornerstone of self love. If we can be ourselves fully and still love ourselves no one else has influence over who we are or what we do. Sadly, some people walk around without ever truly getting comfortable with themselves and miss out on honoring all their personal magic. When we shine in an authentic way – it radiates.
This time at home is allowing us to get really comfortable with ourselves. As an extrovert, I’m always tempted to spend the day scrolling away on social media. In my head it will help me get some of that external action I crave. Eventually, even Instagram gets old. Instead, I’ve been trying to spend my time looking within and trying to identify who I am and what I want. It’s like doing ice breakers with yourself – it can be a little uncomfortable but the goal has good intentions. I’m trying to find that cornerstone of authenticity that allows me to do what I love while being 100% myself. So here’s are five ways I’m getting to know myself:
Obviously I love writing and it’s how I process. While I am not personally a “dear diary” kind of writer I love keeping journals where I pour some sort of stream of consciousness thought vomit onto the page. You can write about your day, emotions, poems, doodle – whatever comes up for you put it in there. Putting my thoughts into writing makes them real for me and lets me identify patterns of things I actually believe for myself v things I’ve been told my whole life.
Ask Yourself Why x3
When something upsets me I’ve started applying space and curiosity. When something upsets me I ask myself why three times. The first time I hit the surface level, the second time we dig a little deeper and the third we get to the root – or close to it. Example: I’m annoyed because I lost my keys. 1) Why? Now I can’t leave and it’s frustrating. 2) It’s frustrating because I lose everything 3) Losing everything makes me feel like I’m not responsible and a shitty human. By three I’ve gotten pretty close to the root and can begin thinking about this trigger. Where does this feeling that I’m not responsible stem from? How do I work with it to course correct in the future. You get to dig super deep with this. This is a learning process for me and I am nowhere near where I want to be with it.
Try New Things
Shoshin is the concept of a beginner’s mind. An expert believes they know everything – a beginner is open to new knowledge and experiences. Shoshin allows us to tap into new possibilities and creativity. Trying new things is a great way to see how you respond in an unknown situation – and it doesn’t have to be scary. I’ve tried baking, painting, poetry, learning Tik Tok dances – anything new. Bonus points if you record them like I do to see how you respond to the new activity. Next on the list is sewing. An added bonus is that this also helps you prepare for changes and challenges thrown at us.
Sitting quietly is extrovert torture but I promise, if you stick to it, its fruitful. Sitting with myself without an agenda has been a game changer for getting to know myself. I personally had to do guided meditations for YEARS before I could just sit and be. Golden rules for this are: set a timer, put on some chill music OR a guided meditation, and be kind to yourself. You will get distracted – just keep coming back.
Be Frank with Yourself
Honestly, ask yourself what you want/enjoy. Make a list. Really think about it. Treat it like a Christmas list and rank in order of what is most important to you. Include big things like security or money and little things like a tree swing or an ocean view. No judging what you want – just let your mind go wild and weed out the rest.
So these are my five tips. Journal, ask yourself why, try new things, meditate and be frank with yourself. Your answers might surprise you.
That’s all I have for you today! Like, comment, subscribe & I’ll see you next time.