Over the summer, I read a post from Jonas Ellison over on medium – Authenticity is overrated – and it got me thinking…. I kept reading and re-reading it, and thinking ‘this resonates so much, I want to say something about it too. But I didn’t… Why? Well, the same reason that almost stopped Jonas:
“Right now, as I type this, I swear to the gods and goddesses above, a part of me totally feels like I’m being inauthentic. It’s telling me that this has all been said before and that what I’m writing here is probably a cheap rendition of that.”
So, I’m taking his advice and just showing up here, now, with my thoughts on the subject.
Here’s the thing. Being ‘authentic’ is a big deal for me. It’s a word I’ve probably over used at points… But it had started to feel a little… Wrong. I couldn’t put my finger on it until I read Jonas’ thoughts and then I realised… What do we mean when we say ‘authentic’ anyway..? I used to think it meant being ‘real’, and that if we are being our true selves – so important to me after years of hiding behind various ‘masks’, that my twitter handle is @ReallyRachaelB – then we should be consistent… That if our core values don’t change then we should never contradict ourselves.
But things do change. Our circumstances change. We learn, we grow. I change my mind, often – hopefully for the better! So if you were to track my digital footprint back to my first ever website, or even read back through some of these blogs, you’ll no doubt notice that sometimes, I do contradict myself. And I’m sure that I will do again.
I am human.
This is me. All of me. Well, most of me – there are some things I choose to keep to myself! I choose to share some of that which makes me vulnerable, as (I think) that’s how we connect, as humans. I might not be consistent but I am honest, open and real. I guess that’s what I mean when I talk about being authentic.
What does ‘being authentic’ mean to you? And how important is it to you? Do share your thoughts in the comments below!