One lesson my daughter was unable to escape under my care was a regular reminder to be authentic. I talked about this with her before she even understood the word, and we had lots of conversations after she did.
It was an easy lesson to share because there was a time in my life when I wasn’t authentically myself because those around me wanted me to be something for them, whether it worked for me or not. Those weren’t happy times and I felt lost; disconnected from others and from my purpose.
I was able to extract myself and reclaim my authenticity. In communication and in life, folks want to know who they're dealing with. When they know the real, genuine, authentic you, those connections are stronger, deeper and more beneficial for all.
You are supposed to be you – no one else. You have a specific purpose in being you and you are needed by those around you. That’s not to say that we don’t work on our issues along the way (tempers, interrupting, selfishness, etc.) because in being authentic, we are brave enough to work towards becoming the best version of us, because it’s what we want.
When we aren’t authentic, we’re really not fooling anyone. People can see through our façade, and then they wonder, “Who IS that person?” Why make folks wonder? If you have an infectious laugh, let it out. If you have a Hummel figurine collection, let people know. If you want to learn how to kayak, put it out there.
People don’t want to know a version of you – they want to know the authentic you. And if they find they don’t like genuine you, that’s okay, too. You will attract the best colleagues, clients, friends and fans by being authentic.