What Is Authenticity?
Authenticity sounds simple, however, I find for myself it is an evolving journey and not black and white. A definition I use for authenticity is being faithful to one’s true personality, spirit, values, beliefs and character, despite external pressures. It requires listening and acting on internal rather than external thoughts.
My Eight-Year Old
I get the opportunity to discuss listening to internal cues with my eight-year old boy often… After he makes a poor choice we discuss whether he had a gut feeling that what he was about to do was wrong. Fortunately, his answer is “yes” he did feel something in his stomach that he ignored. He did not listen to his inner voice.
Do you every ignore your inner voice? What do your internal cues tell you? A client recently was in a position to leverage a great opportunity that could propel her career. Her dilemma was the company has been asking her to do things outside her contract and have been stalling on giving her answers on her attempts to communicate her concerns. She wanted direction on what to do. Her inner voice was conflicted with what she was being asked to do.
My advice to her was never sacrifice yourself in order to be part of what appears to be a big opportunity. You teach people how to treat yourself and if a company gets away with it once, chances are stacked in favor of them doing it again.
I realize we all are asked to do things we may not like to do or are not in our strengths, however, we never should sacrifice our authenticity in order to be part of something that looks to be big.
Acting authentically means at some point saying “no” to something that others have assumed you would do. This is the blossoming part of your personal brand – when you start to fully get who you authentically are and back it up with your actions, listening to your inner voice.
You are moving from a bud that lacked the energy to bloom, to a fully blossomed flower that is one-of-a-kind extraordinaire YOU.
Living authentically is acting in line with your true personality, spirit, beliefs, character and values – what an awesome feeling. Your new, genuine self will attract new people into your life and put off others.
Attracting People That Believe in You
This is the goal all along. You will be lifted up by those that believe in you – in your beliefs and values. These are the people you want to do business with – to work with, become your next client or customer, or develop a lasting, supportive relationship with.
Pause and listen to your inner voice, what is it telling you? Are you on the right path? You are now! Blossom and let others enjoy all of you – your beliefs, your values, your character, your personality and very importantly your spirit! Live out your authentic personal brand!