This photo is of the real me and my husband at Lawry’s for Thanksgiving dinner. No makeup, no airbrushing.
I thought since I was going to write about being authentic I would share what I authentically look like.
I wanted to write about this because I have recently been hearing “authentic” a lot and not in a good way. In my world, I have boundaries and I don’t allow anyone to breach them. My solution to those that do is to use the word, “No” and to avoid being in their presence. Those that consistently want to breach them use “authentic” as a way to shame me into allowing them to say and behave toward me in a way that is demeaning in an effort to make it appear that I’m being unreasonable. Such as, I’m not allowing them to be “authentic”. Which really means “You aren’t letting me act and talk to you any way I want.”
I endeavor to be the best I can be. As I get awareness of my behavior and the words that I use I change. I’m an imperfect being just like everyone else, sometimes successful and sometimes not.
Being authentic for me means:
Awareness-of my feelings, and feelings of others
Integrity-when I have awareness that what I’ve said or done was out-of-line, I apologize AND change my behavior to reflect my new awareness
Constructing boundaries that allow for my safety and peace of mind
Saying “No” when I need to, distancing myself when I need to
Honesty-know the truth, tell the truth in a way that doesn’t harm others
Compassion-remembering that I don’t know others’ story, using discernment instead of judgement to keep myself safe and have peace of mind
Charity-lend a hand when I can, realizing that it’s OK to be the recipient of my charity (I don’t have to give everything away-I can keep something for myself)
Courage-being afraid to be seen and doing it anyway