I read this recently and it put me in mind of how we can all be more authentic. When we aren't, we are giving in to the uncertainty we feel about whether we are ok being ourselves and will be accepted for being real...and all of who we are.
More on this from me soon...
Taking the Risk
Permission to Be Real
People who keep it real present themselves as they truly are, the good parts and the parts most of us would rather hide.
Most of us are familiar with the idea of keeping it real and have an
intuitive sense about what that means. People who keep it real don’t
hide behind a mask to keep themselves safe from their fear of how they
might be perceived. They don’t present a false self in order to appear
more perfect, more powerful, or more independent. People who keep it
real present themselves as they truly are, the good parts and the parts
most of us would rather hide, sharing their full selves with the people
who are lucky enough to know them.
Being real in this way is not an easy thing to do as we live in a
culture that often shows us images of physical and material perfection.
As a result, we all want to look younger, thinner, wealthier, and more
successful. We are rewarded externally when we succeed at this
masquerade, but people who are real remind us that, internally, we
suffer. Whenever we feel that who we are is not enough and that we need
to be bigger, better, or more exciting, we send a message to ourselves
that we are not enough. Meanwhile, people who are not trying to be
something more than they are walk into a room and bring a feeling of
ease, humor, and warmth with them. They acknowledge their wrinkles and
laugh at their personal eccentricities without putting themselves down.
People like this inspire us to let go of our own defenses and relax for a
moment in the truth of who we really are. In their presence, we feel
safe enough to take off our masks and experience the freedom of not
hiding behind a barrier. Those of us who were lucky enough to have a
parent who was able to keep it real may find it easier to be that way
ourselves. The rest of us may have to work a little harder to let go of
our pretenses and share the beauty and humor of our real selves. Our
reward for taking such a risk is that as we do, we will attract and
inspire others, giving them the permission to be real too.