How do I become a More Authentic Person?

By Jim Squire MDiv RP |

All of of us have moments when we are not authentic usually when we try and adapt to a specific environment or social setting. The reason for being inauthentic is very simple we all fear rejection and presenting an idealized self often seems like the best way to ensure we are accepted. An idealized self is basically a projection of who we want to be rather than who we really are or what we feel is our best self. Unfortunately, when we don't present are real self people don’t get to know us and we aren't in touch with what we really think and feel which isn't healthy. Usually the work involved in being more authentic involves gaining more self awareness and accepting who we really are, embracing our strengths and weaknesses. Second, you must deal with the discomfort of feeling exposed since you are presenting the real you to the world which is much more uncomfortable than presenting an idealized self. Being more authentic can begin with simply being honest about how you are instead of always saying "good" or "fine". Usually when you take the risk and are more authentic you will see people change how they relate to you, and you generally attract people that are drawn to your genuineness. I have never encountered anyone who tried being more authentic and didn’t find it a positive experience. The challenge is we must push through our fear of rejection and discomfort of feeling more vulnerable.