This sentence rings the bell with me and with many women I’ve worked with: “I don’t know who I am anymore!” The question is: “Have you ever known who you really are?”
We live in a society that puts high pressure on young girls and women to fit certain standards of intelligence and beauty. This makes it harder and harder for many women to feel liked, accepted, included.
Descartes was right: by nature, we are all “social animals.” No matter our gender, race, age or social status, we all have a basic human need to feel seen, heard, liked, appreciated and loved. We need to belong to our community and to feel socially accepted. There’s nothing wrong with that.
The problem occurs when we are not able to satisfy some of our human desires by ourselves and we use others as a source of happiness and love. From doing things we don’t really want to do in order to be liked, constantly playing a role to fit in or to impress others, pretending that everything is fine when it isn’t so we can look strong, wearing a mask to look smarter, lighter or brighter.
If this sounds familiar, please know you’re not alone in this one. That’s how I used to live, for too many years. Inauthentic, exhausted and drained.
To drop the mask wasn’t easy. You see, being ourselves is an act of courage. A choice we’re making. It can be hard, as sometimes being true to what we know is right means going against the crowd. On the other hand, it comes with a huge amount of Self-Respect, Freedom, and Inner Peace.
So what is it to be authentic?
We are authentic when who we are, what we do and what we believe in – all these align perfectly. We are honest and true.
We are not trying to look perfect because no one is. We approve of ourselves with all perfect imperfections, embracing our flaws and being aware of our shadow.
We interact with others genuinely, with no hidden agenda.
We are willing to show vulnerability.
We are standing by our beliefs and what we think is right.
We live life according to our values and goals, rather than those of other people.
We don’t try to imitate and be a copy of someone else. We sing our song and live our own journey.
“Be yourself, everyone else is already taken.” – Oscar Wilde
The world doesn’t need more counterfeit people. The world needs you TO BE YOU.
And now, I would like to hear from you. Is there anything you commit to doing differently from today, so you can start living more authentically?
Sara Fabian is a Women’s Empowerment & Career Coach and inspirational speaker, on a mission to help professional women to discover their unique strengths, gifts and talents, boost their confidence, find their calling and live a meaningful life of purpose. For weekly inspiration, subscribe to her free newsletter at www.sarafabiancoaching.com or follow her on Facebook.