You've probably heard the old adage that honesty is the best policy. But sometimes it's not so easy to be honest with yourself or others. This can lead to problems in relationships and even prevent you from living your happiest life. However, there are ways to overcome these hurdles and learn how to be authentically yourself. Here are some tips for how you can live authentically and embrace who you truly are:
You can't be authentic to someone else.
You may be thinking that this is a great idea and you want to try it. But wait! There's one more thing that needs to happen before we can get started.
To be authentic, you have to look inside yourself and figure out who YOU are. You need to know what YOU think about things, what YOU like and dislike, what YOU want out of life and how YOU feel about other people.
I'm sure that sounds easy enough; after all it just involves looking at yourself in the mirror every morning until something comes into focus (or maybe not). But there's still something missing from our equation: if being true to yourself means being true only when no one else is around then how do we ever know when we're being authentic?
The more comfortable you are with your authentic self, the better your relationships will be.
You can't be authentic to someone else. You can only be authentic to yourself. That doesn't mean that other people won't appreciate it when you're true to yourself; in fact, they'll probably love it! But there's no way around the fact that if you want to have good relationships with others (and who doesn't?), then first and foremost we need to focus on building healthy relationships with ourselves--and this starts with being honest about who we are as individuals.
It's easy for us humans beings sometimes forget this simple truth: We don't need to change who we are so other people will like us better; rather, we need just simply BE OURSELVES!
You don't need to change who you are to make other people happy.
You don't need to change who you are to make other people like you.
You don't need to change who you are in order for them to love you, or even just like-like you (that's what the kids say these days). And if someone doesn't think that your authentic self is cool? Well, then there's no reason why they should be part of your life anyway!
There is no right way to live your life.
You are not your friends, your parents and siblings, or even the people you most closely identify with. You are you. And there is no right way to live your life--no one else can tell you how to do it for yourself because everyone's experiences are different (and thus equally valid).
If there's anything that I've learned from my own personal journey of self-discovery, it's this: do what makes YOU happy. Don't try to be someone else just because they seem happier than you; instead of trying so hard at living up to someone else's standards of happiness (which may not even be attainable), focus on finding out what makes YOU happy instead!
Stop comparing yourself to everyone else's highlight reel
Social media has become the weirdest, strangest place. It's almost a scary glimpse into the future of what the world could become. Us living our lives online with our whole life being lived through some kind of filter. Repeat after me... SOCIAL 👏🏼 MEDIA 👏🏼 ISN'T 👏🏼 REAL👏🏼.
We've all heard it a million times, but stop comparing your life to others. Stop comparing your body to others. People only show online what they want you to see - or what they think you want to see. Take a deep breath, feel your body, remember to be present in the here and now and put down the device!
Don't say yes out of guilt.
When you're saying no to someone, you might feel like a bad person--especially if they're close to you. But don't let that guilt keep you from saying what's best for yourself and your own happiness. If someone asks something of you and it would make them happy, but not necessarily make your life better, then tell them so! Your time is valuable too; if someone asks for too much of it (or even just part), don't feel guilty about taking some back for yourself.
Being true to yourself frees you up to do the things that make life worth living.
When we're not authentic, we lose out on opportunities and relationships because people can sense that something is off. You may find it difficult to ask for help when you need it or be honest about what makes you happy or unhappy at work or home. Inauthenticity also comes with a lot of guilt--feeling guilty about doing things that make us happy or being honest with others about our needs and expectations. It's easier said than done, but being authentic means being able to make decisions based on your values rather than trying too hard to please everyone else (and getting lost in the process).
The point is, you can be yourself. You don't need to change who you are or what makes you happy in order to fit in with other people. All it takes is a little bit of courage and some self-confidence!
Practice saying YES when you really want to and (the more challenging) NO when you don't. You don't have to lie or come up with an excuse every time either. Just a simple 'thank you for the offer, it's not something I would like to do at this time, but appreciate the opportunity/you thinking of me'.
Has this changed how you look at yourself at all?
Thank you so much for reading,