Be authentic and live an authentic life! This phrase gets used a lot, but what does it actually mean?
How do we find that place within ourselves and know that we are living congruent with our values and beliefs? It is a tough order to distinguish between our authentic self and the self we have created because we think we should be a certain way or have been told by others how we should be. But living authentically doesn’t include any ‘should’.
Living an authentic life means to be our true self, but have you really taken the time to know yourself on a deeper level? Do you really know what you believe? Throughout our lives we are picking up so many messages, thoughts and beliefs from other people that become part of our belief system that we need to challenge these beliefs to find out whether they are really in line with who we are or if we adopted them to fit in and be loved and respected. Some of those beliefs that we picked up over time may serve us well, others may do the exact opposite and need to be released.
It is essential to take the time to reflect on what is truly important to us, what resonates with us and what is truly OUR belief. If we don’t challenge our beliefs, we may be carrying around baggage that isn’t even ours and keeps us from finding our authentic self. By exposing ourselves to new experiences, different ways of being and new ideas, we can discover what really resonates with us.
A big part of finding our authentic self is to let go from the past and be grounded in the present moment. If we are grounded, we can be curious, open and accepting of ourselves and others. If you are living an authentic life, you find what is real for you and that will be very different for different people. The beauty of living authentically is that these differences don’t challenge or frighten us, there is no judgement and we respect our own authenticity as well as the authenticity of those around us.
So how do we truly live an authentic life? Here are our TOP 11 WAYS to live authentically.
#1 Become Self-Aware
Being self-aware is the cornerstone of authenticity. It starts with the intention to be genuine and living from that genuine nature even if it makes us vulnerable. If you are self-aware and know what your core values are and what makes your heart sing, it becomes easier to accept yourself, imperfections and all, because you can embrace your humanity. Being self-aware allows you to be more honest, open and engaged in life.
#2 Connect with Yourself Daily
It is important to check in with yourself on a daily basis and take the time to go within. It isn’t enough to just become self-aware and then let it be. This is an ongoing process, especially since there is so much going on in our outside world that we need to reconnect with our inner world and get back to our purpose, passions, sense of self and desires every single day.
#3 Release Societal Expectations
It is in our human nature to want to live up to the expectations of those around us. A lot of times we say, do and believe things just because of the influence of other people. Break away from the norm, but only in a sense that feels good for you and allow yourself to release that pressure to live up to an ideal that others have chosen. Instead live up to your own authentic ideal.
#4 Stop Comparison and Judgment
We all know that comparing ourselves to others and judging them and ourselves isn’t good for us, yet we still get caught up in it sometimes. How does comparing and judging take away from living authentically? If we are comparing ourselves to others we try to be like them and move away from our authentic self. When we judge, we feel like we are not enough. Release these toxic ways of thinking and instead adopt more accepting, loving and compassionate ideals.
#5 Cultivate an Open Mind
Authenticity grows when we can experience the world from every angle. If we don’t open our mind to new experiences and different points of views, we stay trapped in limitation and judgment and block our vulnerable, authentic self. Be open and challenge yourself to look at all sides of the situation.
#6 Redefine Your Values
We mentioned this earlier. In order to live authentically, you need to know what your values are and what you desire. Challenge the values you grew up with, because you may have just blindly adopted values and beliefs from the people around you. Reevaluate those values and figure out if they still feel right for you. You have to get really clear on what it is that you truly care about and authenticity will follow.
#7 Trust Your Intuition
When we talk and act inauthentically, things just don’t feel right. Pay close attention to those physical sensations and hunches that may be your instinct telling you that you are not genuine. If you are true to yourself, you will feel at ease and in the flow.
#8 Stop Caring About the Past
Moving on from the past can sometimes be challenging and difficult because our past defines who we are today. But is it possible for you to change your perspective of past events and modify the story that you are telling yourself about your past? It is important to heal today so that you are not stuck in a life that happened years ago. Break free from the past.
#9 Practice Gratitude
Living an authentic live means to live in the present moment. We just talked about releasing the past… Expressing gratitude is a great way to step into the now and bring your emotions and feelings into the present moment.
#10 Leverage Your Talents and Strengths
The byproduct of making use of your natural gifts and talents is that you find ease. Being at ease demonstrates your essence and lets your authenticity shine. So instead of dwelling on your flaws, take advantage of your strengths and talents.
#11 Be Positive
When you are positive and share things from that place of positivity, you express what you like, what it is that you believe in and what it is that you want. If you share these thoughts with the world you are expressing authentic pieces of yourself making it easier to live an authentic life.
Living an authentic life is not stagnant. It is constantly shifting and taking on new forms. It is a continual process of learning about ourselves, challenging our beliefs and learning to face our doubts and fears. It is about finding what makes us feel alive and free and then having the courage to live from this place.
BE UNAPOLOGETICALLY, UNABASHEDLY YOURSELF AND LIVE THE LIFE YOU LOVE!
Joschi & Monika