The word authenticity is enjoying something of a hey day at the moment. Everywhere you look, people are talking about the necessity to be authentic. But what does that really mean, and why is it something we should aspire to?
In today’s blog, we will look at four of the top benefits to living a life of authenticity, followed by some easy ways to notice when you are being authentic or straying in the opposite direction.
Top Benefits of Living with Authenticity
1. Better Relationships
When we show up in life and in our relationships in an authentic way we have nothing to hide. People can judge us, and they will, make a decision about whether they like us or not and we can go from there. There is nothing to be feared in this. If you are true to yourself and someone does not like you for it, at least you haven’t wasted time pretending to be someone else until you get to know the other person before revealing parts of yourself bit by bit.
Be yourself and let others be themselves. We won’t all get along, but it makes relationships a lot clearer and less messy.
2. Fewer Regrets
Living an authentic life involves listening to your gut and acting in accordance with what you believe is right. When you are able to identify what you believe to be true and then act in line with this, you won’t have that sinking feeling of regret afterwards. Life is too short to spend your time second guessing yourself. Instead, tap into your personal truth and live it. You will feel so much better.
3. Increased Alignment
When we live as our true, authentic self, we have the opportunity to live out our life purpose without worrying about what others might think. Being in alignment with your values allows you to do your best work, see astonishing results and enjoy life while you’re at it. There is no better feeling than living your life purpose every day.
4. Reduced Stress
Stress is a major cause of illness in our modern society. Anything we can do that minimises the stress in our lives is to be embraced. Luckily, living in authenticity can help to reduce stress. How? When you’re living a life that is not true to you and your personal talents and dreams it is a major source of stress. The longer you let it go on the more stressed you become and the less enthusiastic you feel about life.
Although it can be scary to admit to yourselves and others that you’re not happy in your current situation, at least it opens up the possibility of change. You can then focus on what you really want to be doing with your life and build a plan to achieve it.
Letting go of the stress that comes with living a life that is not for you is an incredible relief. You can start to enjoy life again and look forward to the future.
1. Do you think before you speak?
When we respond in conversation without pausing to think we may inadvertently give an answer which aims to please the other person but does not reflect our true thoughts & feelings.
2. Are you comfortable with your plans?
Your gut is a good way to know whether you are living authentically. If you feel inherently uncomfortable about what you have planned to do or what you have agreed to do for someone else, chances are it is not in alignment with your authentic self.
3. Do you feel like people don’t know the real you?
This can be a troublesome feeling. I’ve been here and remember thinking ‘if only they new the real me’. There are many reasons why we hold back, most have to do with a fear of rejection, but when we do we only have ourselves to blame when others don’t get us. It is not always safe for us to open up and reveal inner truths about ourselves, but when it is, try to push yourself a little more outside of your comfort zone a little at a time.
4. Do you stand your ground when you believe something is right even if others disagree with you?
It is not easy to stand out from crowd and stand up for what you believe to be right when everyone else is willing to just ‘go along’. In these difficult situations it is easy to tell if you are living in accordance with your authentic self. If not, you’ll probably feel awful afterwards. If you do, while the situation may remain difficult, you will know that you chose the right course of action. That is powerful.
5. When you get an off-beat idea that comes from somewhere deep inside you, do you pay attention to it, or wait until it goes away?
Being authentic is not just about being up front and honest with other people. We also have to listen to ourselves, to honour our ideas by at least giving them breathing space for a while. Ignoring an idea that persists at you for months could be like throwing away a fortune, you never know where that seed of an idea might lead.
Do you feel that you are living life with authenticity at present? Is there areas in which you could improve? Let us know what the greatest benefit of living with authenticity has been in your life. Comment below.