Saturday, November 12, 2011

Growing Into Our Own Authentic Self

Our deepest calling is to grow into our own authentic self-hood, whether or not it conforms to some image of who we ought to be.
As we do so, we will not only find the joy that every human being seeks -- we will also find our path of authentic service in the world.
- Parker J. Palmer

I read this quote, that was posted by a friend, @ a while back.

It really resonated with me and the timing couldn't have been more perfect.

My husband and I were talking last night about being true to ourselves and what that meant. Because "being true to you" is different for everyone - and often times, the boundaries you set, and the level of honesty you choose to use in each relationship can be viewed differently by each person involved.

What I consider "being true to me" and the radical honesty I try to live by each day . . . offends, appalls and angers many people and to others well, they find it refreshing from the half truths and double sided conversations that plague most interactions. I don't want to hold grudges, stew over a slight or not tell someone exactly how I feel. I personally want authentic relationships, not superficial interactions with morally vacuous zombies.

Before Brandon, my husband, asked me to marry him - I told him that I wanted us to have complete honesty in our relationship. I expect him to call me out on something that I may say or do in a tactful and private way (and he does) and I do the same for him. And you know what? It's the best damn relationship I have ever had in my life. This "tell it like it is" approach is the foundation of my marriage.

Over the last few years I have been living by this mindset. . .

If you're unhappy about something - tell the person/people that are involved. They can't fix it, apologize, make amends or make it right if you don't TELL THEM. Gossiping, lying to them when they ask for feedback and saying that everything is okay when it's not - will not fix what ever is wrong.

Holding onto the anger of feeling victimized or slighted is like holding onto a hot coal - the only person it hurts is you. If you don't want to tell the person/people who have hurt you (maybe they have passed on) write out your feelings on paper - then burn it. Let these past poisons go and make room in your life for the amazing experiences and people you deserve.

Remember that as you make the journey to your authentic self don't get distracted by those who *think they know you. There are people that may assume that your are this way or that, without investing the time it takes to really get to know you. Don't chase after approval or relationships with people who are emotionally handicapped by their own insecurities. . . these relationships are toxic and could literally make you sick. Don't be baited by the "country club compliment" either . . . once you get slapped by that razor sharp remark in a white lace glove. . . walk away from these people and don't look back.

If you want to discover true happiness, focus your time and attention on those people who share in your successes. Your life will turn around when the tribe you surround yourself with accepts you as you are, helps you become a better person without tearing you down, who makes you laugh and who, above all, shares good news instead of gossip.

It's foolish to say that I haven't learned from the negative people who have come and gone in my life over the years. Those who chose to base their opinion of me from gossip verses their own personal interactions with me, those who chose to shun a friendship to be part of the "click" - those who tried to convince me that I was wrong for standing up for what I knew was right . . . the person who disappointed me the most was busy tearing other people down to feel important. I truly believe that each encounter we have with poisonous people, affords us an opportunity to reflect on past experiences and draw upon the wealth of knowledge that we are in control of our own happiness. Life is user controlled content . . . you don't like what is going on right now? Change it. Take some time to unwind and start with your attitude. There is power in saying thank you to those that make each day brighter. 

There will be many kinds of people that you encounter, embrace, walk with and sometimes pass on your way to discovering your path to authentic service and your own happiness, your own joy.

My mother taught me that if you surround yourself with people who like/love you for who you are - and not who they think you should be. . . you will live a rich life.

I consider myself incredibly lucky. I am committed to surrounding myself with people who have a passion for life and respect honesty.

We are the author of our own story.  As we grow into our authentic self it's up to us to celebrate the change.

If who you are is solely dependent on what others think of you . . . you will never discover your own inner beauty, fierce strength and creative brilliance.

**Suzie, thank you for sharing that quote and reminding me every day to celebrate the joy of life and the happiness of being true to me. :)


Who has inspired you lately?

Are you surrounding yourself with people who live authentically?

No comments:

Post a Comment