I don’t know about you but if I knew then what I know now I still wouldn’t change a single thing. Why? Because I feel like I am right where and who I should be in the here and now. I wouldn’t be the person I am today if it wasn’t for what has gone before, however bad some of it was. Therefore I am grateful for it all.
Before you start rolling your eyes at the much overused buzzword that is “authentic” ask yourself this, how genuine are you? Do your words and actions truly match your beliefs? I believe that unless we are true to ourselves we can never be truly happy or lead a fulfilling life.
Be yourself, everyone else is taken ~ Oscar Wilde
It’s not easy to be authentic. Childhood influences, personality, culture and life experiences impact and guide our belief system, and have the power to leave us believing that we’re not good enough as we are and that we need to conform to this, that or the other. Then what happens? We have no idea who we really are and therefore haven’t got a clue what we really want in life. Alienated, stressed, depressed and helpless, we can be miserable and lost. Don’t be that person, you don’t have to be. Turn it around, dream BIG and have everything you want in life. Make the choices that are right for you.
How? I hear you cry.
Stop looking at others and the rest of the world and begin to focus on yourself. There is no place here for comparisons, chuck ’em out! The other most important piece of advice I can give you is that this is a journey and a commitment, it’s not just for today. In order to bring about change and be all you can be you must surrender and accept daily practice is the only way forward. Remember: what is right for one person may not be the course for you (please refer back to the wise words of Mr Wilde). And be prepared, change isn’t an easy ride, it takes work.
Slow and steady wins the race.
No matter what my circumstances or how crazy and chaotic things have been in my life, and in my head, I have consistently asked myself the following type of questions:
- “When I am on my deathbed will this matter to me?”
- “When I am dying will I regret this?”
- “When faced with death which path would I have rather have followed?”
Okay, yes, it’s extreme, but it works for me. In my own experiment of life I have found that the choices I have made that have been based on my genuine beliefs are my greatest decisions. There is always a choice somewhere along the line, no matter what the situation. Whether it be of our own making or external factors, how you respond is YOUR choice, no one else’s.
The first step toward change is awareness. The second step is acceptance. ~ Nathaniel Branden
Get to know yourself
Write down how you see yourself
Ask others how they see you
With every word and every action ask yourself this, “Do I really believe in what I am saying and doing?”
Become aware of when you are not being true to yourself. How does it make you feel?
Become aware of when you are being true to yourself. How does it make you feel?
Which do you prefer?
Surround yourself with the right people
Do the people in your life share your beliefs/values?
Do they support you and encourage you to be all that you can be?
Can you talk openly and honestly to them?
Do they challenge and stretch you?
Do they make you laugh?
We all need a range of people in our lives but the must haves are those who connect with us as our authentic selves. However, if the relationship is toxic, get rid asap! Don’t over complicate it for yourself. Seriously, say “See ya!” today.
Forget the “how”
This is where I personally have failed. Over the years I have always been so focused on The How that I forget The Now. Know what you want but stop stressing over how the hell you’re going to get it. Know that you are worthy of what you want. Take each day as it comes and be genuine in everything that you do, the rest will follow. Be open, be honest, be YOU.
You don’t have to work it out on your own. In the UK we still have a tendency to be shy about these things and it’s utter nonsense backed up by various out of date stigmas. What poppycock! Just do it! We all need a little help from time to time so don’t deny yourself the chance, especially through worrying what others may think of you. My top tip here is chose the person that is right for you, and make sure they’re accredited in whatever field they work in!
How genuine are you?