“So often we wait for the climate and conditions in life to be perfect before we feel safe enough to step forward, trust, and be our authentic selves. What we don’t realize is in order to create the ideal climate for which we are waiting; we must first
be authentic…” — Sonia Choquette
I have always found it a bit odd that people differ depending on who they are around; that is to say, they are one way around this person, yet totally different around someone else. Some of the most common places for this are in the boyfriend to girlfriend, friend to friend, or husband to wife, relationship. Another place this is seen is in how a coworker may differ when the boss is or is not around. Next you have those that are different when around others they hold in higher esteem than themselves. Finally, there are also those that are different around people they believe to be below them.
Above I have pointed to four opportunities for people to be themselves. What was seen however, was due to intimidation, fear, or a poor self-image, many people are not authentic.
Unfortunately, these people have not learned it is best to be authentic, regardless of the situation or who was involved, what it is about, when it took place, or where it happened. Living a life of authenticity will change you for the better as you will no longer be living a lie. You will no longer be hiding behind something you are not. You will be free to become what you were intended to be, which is not possible while living a fairy tale life.
Since meeting my wife, over forty years ago, I have had many tell me I wouldn’t do or be the way I am IF SHE were around. Truth is all of these people get a rude awakening when finally they are able to watch the two of us interact for they quickly witness that I don’t change, not even a little bit. They are shocked when they see me doing the same things I was doing when she was not around. Some of them even question her only to hear her acknowledge I am who I am all of the time. I do not change when my wife, children, friends (from any background), employees, or those I aspire to, are around.
Now, this being said, by being truthful to yourself, you will find the power to become what you need to be in order to attract what you want. For in order to grow, you must be who you are without hypocrisy; it is only then the truth will set you free to be who you are supposed to be. As stated above, people think by being someone else or projecting a different image then what or who they are, others will like them; THEN after getting these people to like them they can be who they really are and all will be OK. I can tell you emphatically, this does not work. As a matter of fact, when people do finally reveal whom they really are, those around them become baffled, for they thought they knew the person when in fact they did not.
This is very common in the marriage relationship. As a matter of fact, it is not unusual in the beginning of the relationship for the man to be open about who he is only to find that she doesn’t like this or that in who he is therefore, he quits being this or that around her. In reality, he doesn’t stop being who he is as he continues being this or that around others. The others being the friends who accept him the way he is. As a result, he is one person around her and another around his friends. He is in essence living a lie.
This is also common around friends of different social strata. You may be one way around ‘your church friends’ yet someone else another around ‘your drinking friends.’ If either group saw the ‘other you’ they would more than likely be shocked to discover there was another side of you, which they did not know. It is sad to think you know someone when in fact you do not and this is most hurtful in the marriage relationship. It is by far best to be yourself all of the time.
Many of you reading this may already have been thinking the question, “Well what about emulating other successful people?” As a matter of fact this is what all of us do as children in that we emulate our parents doing what they do and saying what they say. Growing up from child to adult, the majority of us pick someone to emulate doing what they do. Some do this to be cool and some in order to be successful.
The fact is you do start out emulating others however; it is the principles you are ultimately to emulate. In reality it is not the principles with which you first identified, it was with the person. To grow, we have to get beyond the person and begin applying the principles we see in these people, doing so until the principles become first nature. In other words, you must practice until they become first nature in YOU. At this point you are not the person you at first emulated. Your attraction to this person simply helped you recognize and begin to apply the principles you saw in them to your everyday life. The same applies with playing an instrument, a sport, or any other specific endeavor. You may emulate a great cello player such as Yo-Yo Ma, even showing favoritism to his style, but once you have mastered the instrument, it will be you playing, not Yo-Yo Ma. It will be your preference, your style; your approach, for this is what it takes to be YOU.
If you want a rewarding and fulfilling life, then I suggest following these few things:
1. Learn first of all to love and accept who you are and how you look for this will help you develop a strong, healthy self image.
2. Learn secondly to love and accept others for whom and what they are for this will enlarge your heart and broaden your ability to influence and be influenced.
3. Learn not to live a lie. Stop trying to portray something you are not; you have uniqueness about you, shared by no one else.
4. Learn to live the truth; be the same around everyone.
5. Learn to let the chips fall where they may for it is not possible to please everyone – you never will.
May you grow to become a better person, as you learn to enjoy the fruits of your own labor.
Best of LUCK as you
Labor Under Correct Knowledge…