7 Trials of Authentic Living.
By Veronika Bond
“It’s the most ecstatic thing, to just be yourself.” ~ Jamie Catto
Everybody wants to be their Authentic Self.
We all want to walk our True Path and live in accordance with our Own Dream.
When we pay for a service, we expect to get the Real Deal. When buying a product, we want the Genuine Article.
Authenticity is the latest trend in marketing. Business owners have discovered that customers are more likely to buy from them and remain loyal to them, if they build trust through authenticity.
Being authentic has great health benefits too:
* The innermost essence of us is authentic by nature. Behaving or acting in non-authentic ways goes against our own authentic part. Being authentic resolves inner conflict and reduces emotional stress.
* Being authentic relieves mental strain, as Mark Twain pointed out, “If you tell the truth, you don’t have to remember anything.”
* If there were any statistics about living a more authentic life, the results would most likely show that people who live authentically are happier than those who don’t. They also enjoy more freedom, because we all know that ‘the truth sets us free’, but perhaps not immediately.
“The truth will set you free, but first it will piss you off.” ~ Gloria Steinem
Why is it so difficult to live in a state of authenticity?
We all like to do it in theory. In practice, however, it can be hellish difficult to accept, speak, bear, and act on your truth.
Why? Because Truth is a serious rebel. She demands radical changes inside and outside. Until you commit to living your truth in a radical way, you just don’t realize how much untruth there is in everyday life.
Here are 7 trials of living your truth:
1. Living your truth upsets your nearest and dearest.
When you begin living your truth, you are likely to upset other people around you because they are used to you being a certain way. When you start being different they get confused. They don’t know how to handle the New You. They get upset, and that is inevitably upsetting for you too. Nobody likes upsetting their nearest and dearest.
2. Living your truth pushes other people‘s buttons.
When you begin living your truth, you may lose some friends. Authentic behavior can upset other people because it reminds them of their own non-authenticity. Deep down everyone wants to be authentic. Everyone wants to have integrity and be their true self. But that doesn’t necessarily mean that people around you welcome your efforts in the direction of authentic living. They may perceive it as a challenge and reject you because of it.
3. Living your truth upsets your current life.
Being your true self is not separate from the rest of your life. Your whole life is arranged around who you are, what you identify with, how you present yourself in the world. It affects your relationships, job, lifestyle, people you associate with, your daily life. The prospect of living more authentically can be very daunting, even scary. It may imply major changes, depending on how far off the truth-mark you’ve been living so far. This can be very uncomfortable. It may cause upheaval, considerable costs, severe crisis.
4. Living your truth is confusing.
Being your authentic Self requires great clarity. We are all stuck in certain habits, which are related to a state of relative non-authenticity. Becoming more authentic forces us to change certain habits.This can be uncomfortable and stressful. Old habits feel normal, they have become like a natural part of who we are. Behaving in a more truthful manner can almost feel a little fake at first. This can be very confusing.
5. Living your truth is painful.
Living your truth and becoming more authentic requires you to be brutally honest with yourself. You have to face inner monsters and all sorts of shady characters that happen to hang around in the darker places of your inner world. This can be painful and upsetting. But it is a necessary part of the healing process; it leads to a catharsis.
6. Living your truth requires discipline.
If you thought that living your truth allowed you to let it all hang out, you couldn’t be more wrong. Living your truth is something you have to earn. You have to practice being truthful in small things before you can be your authentic Self in a big way. You can’t expect the Universe to deliver all the perks to match your True Self, you have to become it first. You’ve got to lead by example and show the Universe that you’re serious — e.g., if you want to find true love, you’ve got to show true love towards yourself first.
7. Living your truth implies loss.
Gaining freedom through truth means you have to let go of your attachments. The path towards living your truth leads into completely unknown territory. If you thought you could live your truth, and at the same time take all the beliefs, ideas, understanding and judgments that form the structure of your current paradigm with you, think again. You can’t travel to distant places while staying at home. It is impossible to become authentic and free while hanging on to non-authentic parts of you. It’s all or nothing.
Having gotten the bad news out of the way, here’s the good news: Living your authentic life is indeed the most ecstatic way to live, as Jamie Catto said. It is the only way to get what you really want from life and live in a truly sustainable manner. More about the 7 Joys of Authentic Living another time.
Veronika Bond is a writer and researcher in the fields of ‘self-knowledge management’ and ‘organic personal growth’. She is particularly interested in the human subjective experience and how to use this readily available information as a ‘renewable resource’ for everyday life. Veronika is the author of ‘The Solo System’, a groundbreaking model of human consciousness. Using the ‘endoscope’ of the Solo System as a tool, she offers close up views of the wonders and phenomena of the inner microcosm. This is not just an intellectual exercise, it has serious implications affecting life at all levels — spiritual, potential, emotional, rational, physical, and more. You can visit her online at her Oasis for travelers on the inner journey.