The old aphorism, "fake it till you make it", suggests we can bluff our way through adversity and uncertainty until we're fully ready to take it on. There are times where we need to jump head-first into a challenge, keeping a big smile on our faces to convince everyone around us that we know what the hell we're doing. But you know what can't be faked? Character. Authenticity. No matter how much bluffing we do, it's nigh-undeniable when someone is being authentic.
Honestly, it's a beautiful thing, authenticity. You can see in the video capture above me being my authentic self. I made some random "awful" pun, and amused myself to nerdy laughter (yes, I laugh at my own jokes). Watch the video, and you'll further witness me in a state of authenticity -- overjoyed at being able to coach all of you. It's taken me a long time to become comfortable with not only my authentic self, but sharing it with the world. While it wasn't an easy process, stepping into myself, it's one I'm forever grateful for. What finally tipped my scales in favour of unabashedly being me, you may ask? Well, wonderful readers, allow me to let you in on one of the secrets to becoming authentic: uncover a passion in your life.
Now, this doesn't have to be the "big-P" passion that forever defines you. We wouldn't even know if it was at the time, anyway. All that matters is you discover something that lights a fire in you, and that you want to pursue passionately. It may be work, it may be a hobby; irregardless, living in a state of passion connects you closer to your own true self -- your authentic self. I've had jobs, hobbies, and pastimes that have allowed me to connect with others, but nothing has ever felt as "right" as coaching. There's this beautifully indescribable quality that's created when you align with your inner truth and authenticity. So many of us have actually discovered it, in fact; the difficulty often faced is living authentically to the outside world, and not just inwardly.
That's not to say that everyone acts falsely; rather, that there is a sobering and fearful quality about revealing ourselves to the world that keeps us from genuinely opening up. And that fear can be understood -- stepping into the proverbial limelight opens us up to criticism and judgement from others. The benefit of stepping into authenticity instead of a manicured and cultivated personality, however, is that the breadth and depth of connection created cannot be measured. It takes courage to live authentically, as others may not agree with you; however, that authenticity creates such benefit in our lives by attracting those of like mind and energy. We become better, and build better relationships by being our authentic selves.
Moral of the story: bravely be you. We make the world better by living in it authentically, and in turn, we are made better because of it.