An authentic life ...

Authenticity describes a harmonic balance between who we are when others are watching and who we are when we are alone.  The concept is inseparable from that of congruent living. 

Ultimately, I feel that authentic living is a liberating experience. It takes and effort of will and a lot of energy to maintain a facade that is not truly representative of who we are. Being authentic, of course, opens us up to attack and criticism, so we need to be at a place in our lives where we are okay with that. And it’s not easy to invite criticism; I for one, have never liked it. 

I now understand though, that criticism of our beliefs, ideas, opinions and actions is necessary for our development and growth as human beings. Criticism is necessary to help test these things and provide feedback that can allow us to make adjustments and improvements. 

Living in an authentic way is to breathe easy. It is to live in an open way; to be transparent; to be fully open to the acceptance of new ideas, better ways to do things, a change of world-view. Perhaps being authentic is, in a way, a kind of returning to a more childlike state. As children we were open to everything; we were natural explorers, effortless learners, etc.

In returning to such a state, with the huge benefit of experience and hindsight, we can become a sort of wise-child. Authentic living can permeate all aspects of our lives … moving into a state where we care less about what others think of us, frees up a lot of energy that we can put into bettering both ourselves and the world we inhabit. Plus, think of at the savings you make by not buying into plastic surgery, facelifts, and the myriad other ego-driven investments that people make to engender the approval of others. We have one life to live - we might as well live that life in the most liberating way we can. We should not be slaves to the opinions of others.

  • JBW


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