Nothing is more draining than trying to be someone or something you’re not. If you’re forcing yourself to fit into an unrealistic “image” because you think that’s what your family, friends, significant other, or colleagues expect, you’re going to burnout fast. Embrace and love the real you–and let him or her break through the concrete barrier.
Authenticity is a buzzword that you may be sick of hearing yet it’s a really strong concept wrapped into one single word. That one word describes the level of honesty and truthfulness associated with your personal brand. If you are a business owner, and truly authentic, their true personality will shine through your marketing materials; your business practices will match your core values and mission statement. The same is true for individuals. When you are authentic, people will notice a shift in you, a grounded quality and they will feel the difference.
So, how does one become authentic?
Being authentic starts with knowing who you are. Cultivating your purpose and knowing who you are stems from knowing your core values. This is the cornerstone to stepping into your authentic self.
Core values are how you know yourself. What core values are most important to you? How will you express those in your relationships, family life, at work and in the business world? They inform all your decisions. From your work, to your partner, to the house you buy, to how you raise your children.
Incorporating these values into your life will attract the people and situations that are heartfelt.
Finding ones’ voice doesn’t only pertain to using your actual vocal cords or learning how to sound smart. There’s an unmistakable power in knowing and being your real self.
One way that I interpret “finding your voice” is to understand your core values and to live your life based on that knowledge. The way I knew I was not in alignment with my true purpose, I used to have a recurring dream, probably for the duration of a decade or more.
The structure of each dream was the same. There was an event, a wedding, a party, a concert, a lecture to go to. And each time, I would find myself in a panic, caught in my bedroom closet, trying to find the right clothing and outfit to wear. Each dream I would ultimately miss the event because I could not find the right thing to cloth myself in.
The location and circumstances were always different, sometimes in different countries, (Italy was my favorite spot) but the theme was the same. At first I interpreted this literally, as if it were about clothing choices or just anxiety in general, but as I dug deeper, I understood that dreams speak to us in metaphor. My difficulty in finding the right clothes was my difficulty in “finding my voice”, my identity. I was not living from my authentic self. I was trying out all these different outfits but couldn’t find the right one.
Another aspect of finding your voice to tap into your authentic self is to speak your truth. This may mean pushing out of your comfort zone. Authentic sharing is the goal, not being insensitive, critical or aggressive just for the sake of being direct. There’s no advantage to hurting people’s feelings.
The most powerful technique I have come across, that allows each individual to get her needs met, be heard and tap into knowing exactly what they need in order to be direct is Marshall Rosenbergs Non-violent communication/ Compassionate Communication. NVC teaches that we all share the same basic human needs, and that all actions a person takes, are a strategy to meet one or more of these needs. People who practice NVC find greater authenticity in their communication, increased understanding, deepening connection and conflict resolution. It’s a powerful method once learned correctly. It enables you to find your voice, know want you want, ask for it, in a manner that if done correctly, allows you to be direct and making it about you, not the other person to avoid conflict.
Try compassionate and direct communication….you might really like it 🙂
This concept is about confidence. We know that confidence is the cornerstone of success, yet being confident is a hard one for many people. It’s often the feeling of not being good enough. When I was younger, I was an extremely shy and introverted person. I felt awkward and sometimes invisible. When I really began to accept myself, and feel good in my skin, my confidence started to shift. Once you understand and accept your real self, get comfortable with it.
And finally, don’t think you have to be something you’re not. Try something easy, like only wearing clothing you feel comfortable in. This is an outer measurement, but it’s a great start to feel good physically throughout the day. Do what feels easy and natural. Loving who you are and showing it to the world will land you success.
When you are overwhelmed with to-do’s and obligations, you may not be able to tune into your authentic self.
We are bombarded with offers and emails coming at you . Your to-do list continues to grow and can be distracting and cause unnecessary anxiety. Filter the whirlwind of advice coming at you online and minimize the bombardment. Some key suggestions are
As a life, business and leadership coach, I help people step into their authentic self. If you are in transition or setback, discovering your authentic self is the key to success in moving through difficult challenges.
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