The definition of authentic, according to Oxford Dictionary is: “Of undisputed origin and not a copy; genuine”. This sounds fine if you’re buying a handbag, but what does ‘authentic’ actually mean for human beings?
These days we expect ‘authenticity’ as a social norm and we have an incredible desire to be ourselves and to be true to ourselves. But, when it comes to our friendships, relationships and general interactions with others, there seems to be a big gap between what we expect and what we get.
To be authentic is to know our feelings, desires and convictions but to also be publicly open about them.
Unfortunately, this gets complicated when we are put in the social context. Whether you’re an introvert or extrovert, we are social beings and we feel cultural pressure to behave in a certain way to meet our moral obligations and responsibilities.
We play so many roles and each of them brings its own layer of complexity in the pursuit of living more authentically. As a mother you have a responsibility to take care of your child, as a coworker, you have an obligation to do your work and so on.
Living ‘wholly’ Authentic
So how do we ensure we are being a good friend, partner, mum, coworker AND be authentic to ourselves? The result we end up with is a distinction between our private identity and our public self. But perhaps there is actually nothing wrong with this and the pressure we are putting on ourselves to remain authentic; to find things and people who are genuine, is just part of what it is to be human. We can be authentic depending on whatever feels right at some particular moment.
We are ultimately ‘free’ beings which mean that we may not be in control of circumstance, but we are in control of our interpretation and our response to life events. Depending on the particular moment we find ourselves in, we can choose to play out our different roles – choosing to behave in a certain way or to create a relationship to satisfy a particular need.
To be our “true self” or to be true to one’s self, we must feel this freedom to choose. If we truly feel like we are in control over the way we are living, we would feel our existence was more authentic. It is in our choices that we express who we are.
If someone or something does not feel right to you, then it probably isn’t and remember that you always have a choice with how you deal with it. Just know that you are never alone in how you are feeling. So, if you’re seeking out a connection that is aligned with your true self, then you will find it and you have no obligation to settle for anything less than that.
The more you live your life aligned to your true self the more you will attract people, events and things that complement you. This is all in accordance with the universal Law of Attraction, which you can read more about here.
In love and light,