Who are you? Are you one person at home and a different person at work? Do you change the way you act or respond to a situation, based on which ‘hat’ you are wearing? Many of us may not even realize that we are acting completely differently in one area of our lives and another. It’s time to give up the mask and take off the hats and live authentically, no matter where we are.
Gratitude Tip: You are unique. You have gifts to share the world. Hiding behind different masks or personae is doing all of us a disservice. Start with gratitude for the miracle that you are. Focus on all of the things you really like about yourself and give thanks for those qualities. And slowly allow yourself to be more authentic in every area of your life.
There is a lot of fear around being authentic and speaking our truth. Brené Brown‘s work focuses on vulnerability, fear and authenticity and I’ve just started reading her most recent book, Rising Strong about how we get up when we fail. She encourages us to be authentic in all areas of our lives. And why not? Why not be the person we truly are? What’s the benefit of pretending to be someone else? It can be exhausting to spend our days behind different masks and wearing different hats. Yet many of us will do just that, often for our entire lives.
Growing up, I did speak my truth. But as a younger child, I didn’t understand how to do it without causing pain or hurt. And so I as soon as I was older enough to realize this, I stopped speaking my truth. I did not have many friends in elementary school and in high school I always felt like I was trying to be someone else. Sound familiar? I imagine that if I asked my high school friends if they were authentic during that time in their lives, most would say no. It is during these difficult formative years that most of us start to hid behind our masks and no longer live authentically.
As adults, we can continue this for the rest of our lives. I certainly kept it up for a while. It was only after my first marriage ended that I started to look at why I was keeping up appearances. I got married because I wanted to be married, just not to my partner at the time. He went along with it too, even though we both knew we weren’t meant to be together. It was a tough lesson to learn and I am glad I did go through it, because it got me to where I am today, married to my perfect husband.
Ask yourself this: Where I am not living authentically? And if you’re ready to start being YOU in all areas of your life, I commend you. It won’t be easy at first and it may feel very unnatural. Lean into daily and you’ll find that it becomes easier and easier and eventually, you’ll feel better than you ever did before. Speak your truth! Stand up for what is important to you. Give the uncomfortable feedback (ask permission first). Make changes when things are not in line with your values. Take inspired action. Don’t let your life pass by without ever being YOU.
Day 19 of the #40daysofgratitude challenge. Why not join us for the second half? Start your 21 days of gratitude with us today. Use the hashtag #40daysofgratitude so that we can see your posts and follow along.