If you've ever been anywhere near a social media feed, picked up a Brené Brown book or watched a Ted Talk, you've probably heard about authenticity.
You know, "Be yourself, because everyone else is already taken."
The sentiment is pretty darn lovely.
But what they forgot to tell you is that during this pursuit of being authentically you:
1) You will probably realise you don't yet know who you are.
2) Your convictions will be tested like nothin' else.
3) You will learn that authenticity is often at odds with being liked.
4) You will realise that very few, if any, really understand you.
5) You may be required to shed things you thought you loved because they belong to old personas that no longer fit.
I could carry on, but at the risk of sounding sombre, I will stop. Because all of these are wonderful things!
In the process of descending into the depths of yourself and painstakingly sorting through your personal biases, judgements and tendencies, reflecting on ideas about success and legacy and love and meaning and generally getting mud on you face and grit under your nails, you'll come a whole lot more alive!
Your eyes will shine a little brighter.
Your breath will become a little smoother.
You'll see beauty in (almost) everything.
You'll begin to live with a sense of radical and unconditional permission to be misunderstood, and be deeply okay with that.
And after some repetitions, you might notice that your relationships have deepened. Intimacy becomes less scary. You meet new and interesting people with fascinating stories to tell.
Life responds to you differently.
Authenticity is a close cousin of truth. And truth doesn't just have mud on it's face, but blood (mythologically-speaking).
Once you start to tell the truth as you see it (and I mean from a place of personal integrity and sufficient critical thinking, not simply selecting convenient prejudices), things get pretty wild.
It can be really hard to stand for something. But I've come to believe that it's much harder not to.
This is the adventure you go on when you want to find out what you've really got inside of you.
When you want to reveal your own flavour of brilliance.
When you want to discover where your edges are.
I'm not afraid of death. But I must admit, the idea of death arriving before I've really discovered how much I've got, how much I can really lay out there during my run in this life, that feels a little scary.
Somatically—that is, in the body—fear feels pretty similar to excitement.
This is the path that excites me most. The path of truth.
Are you out there forging your own path too? Given you're here reading along with me, I suspect that to be the case. I celebrate your courage.
Thank you for showing up.
Keep showing up.
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