What does being authentic mean?
You hear it all the time, be authentic, let people see the real you and things will happen. But what does that really mean? There are several definitions of the word authentic, but for the purpose of this writing, I will use this one from the Merriam Webster Dictionary: “true to one’s own personality, spirit, or character.”
What does it mean to me?
To me, being authentic means showing the world the “real” you, and not having any façade or mask. I don’t know about you, but I don’t hide who or what I am from anyone. I might not show the full me, but I don’t pretend to be something I am not. Why is this important? For me, it means never having to apologize for a falsehood. The way I live my life is what the world sees, nothing more and nothing less. I am the same person in my professional life that I am in my personal life. The only difference is that in my professional life, I don’t talk in detail about my personal life. There are things that don’t need to be known by those who know me professionally, but what they see is what they get.
Are you wearing a mask or facade?
Everybody has multiple facets of their lives, but not everyone is authentic in all of them. For many, one or more aspects of their lives are a façade and not the real person. To me, why pretend to be something you are not? I have never understood that and never will. For me, if you meet me socially, whether in a business or a personal setting, you will see the same person. This way I don’t have to remember what I told someone, as I only showed who I truly am. Yes, I might hide aspects of my life, but I don’t hide who I truly am.
Can you be authentic or vulnerable in business?
What does being authentic mean in your life or your business? I have followed and studied with many of the top “gurus” in business, sales, networking and success over the years. All mention living your life in an authentic way. They talk about showing up authentically in order to build followers and develop a reputation of being an expert in your field. According to them, authenticity is the way to create the know, like and trust factor that will ultimately bring new clients into your business or practice. By showing them that you are real and allowing them to see your vulnerability, you are letting them see that you are just like them, not any different. Potential connections love to see that the people they are considering working or partnering with are just like them, with the same problems and concerns. They like to see that you have been through what you are professing to be an expert in. They want to know that you truly understand their situation and plight and have been successfully able to either work through it or are in the process of doing so. This way, they can realize that you will be able to successfully help them work through their own issues and create a better life for themselves.
Why I am writing this
Why is this important as a first post? Because I wanted to let everyone know that I will be as authentic as I possibly can. I will be writing from the heart and letting you see my vulnerability. I don’t have a façade in my personal life, so why should I have one here on my own website, in my own blog? I live with authenticity on a daily basis, so why should that change here in my blog. You will see the real me, the vulnerable me, the expert in me, and will learn how I changed my own life, and how with everything I have learned and experienced, I can help you or those around you to do the same. I am just like you, I realized that I needed to make some changes and have successfully done so and made my life better. I know you can too!