Are you authentic? Why the word is overused.

Are You Authentic?

How would you really know? I don’t like labeling any person especially using the word “authentic.” While the word is adequate to describe their characteristics of being real, genuine or not a fake, it doesn’t help a person who lacks these desirable traits, to acquire them. A person who lacks traits of being real doesn’t even know they may not be real and that they are faking their own life. To them, faking is the only way they know how and they will have the deer in the headlights look when talking about this.

I’ve met several highly motivated people who claim they are authentic when it seems to me that they are faking it. Saying your are authentic and being authentic are two very different states.

I like using other traits to describe an authentic person. A real person has these desirable traits; self-love and personal unconditional acceptance of themselves and their imperfections. A person who lacks self-acceptance of their faults will understand the faults they have that they don’t accept and may be led to change. They may then be led to ask important questions such as, “I wonder how I begin to accept my own faults?” Or the best question they might ask, “How can I ever drop my guard and begin to share my faults with others without feeling ashamed of them?”

Self-love allows a person to exercise courage in being open and vulnerable. Lack of self-love, or another way to describe this state; conditional self-love, causes a person to believe they are not enough. I’m not smart enough. I’m not talented enough. I’m not worthy enough.

Shame is the underlying cause of not being authentic and acting in a way to please others. Shame is hidden in most people. Watch my next few videos, as I will teach you about shame and how to overcome it. I’ll teach you how it affects a child too. You’ll be a better self and much better parent.

 

Got a mom like I had? Great, there is hope!

connieHow was your relationship with your mother?

My family didn’t have any real money growing up. Dad was a plumber and my mom was a nurse. When I finally went to school is when mom went back to work full time and I had a nanny when I got home from school. I guess that part is typical.

Well maybe not.

You see my mom was very insecure. She always was trying to please others. I thought that was normal.

I was the last of three children. The runt of the family. I have an older sister and brother. My sister never met mom’s expectations. They bucked heads all the time. My brother, on the other hand, was a perfect child.

Me? According to mom when ever she got upset with me would remind me, “You know you were a mistake. Your dad and I never planned on having a third child.”

At the time I didn’t really understand how that affirmation affected me. My mom, like her mom and dad, shamed me into compliance.

I grew up thinking two things and unfortunately for years were the legacy I received from my mom.

I wasn’t worthy of love because after all, I was a mistake. Plus my roll in life was to please others and not be myself.

I did those two things very skillfully for the first 50+ years of my life. Trying to be who others wanted me to be was draining. It took a lot of energy. But I excelled at being who they wanted me to be. Well, one only thinks they excelled. Truth is I sucked at being someone other than myself.

I even was able to fake my way as a great athlete growing up. Although when things went south and a coach yelled at me I became fearful and that hampered my performance. You can’t escape the consequences of shame. It will kick your butt every time.

Trouble with the mantra of not owning your own story, the bad crap you don’t want anyone else to know about, is that at some point in your life you’re going to crash and burn.

I did. I crashed hard. Hurt like hell.

brene brownI learned from an angel sent to me from heaven how powerful it is to be authentic. In fact, Brene’ Brown, PhD in her book, The Gifts of Imperfection, define authentic as, “The daily practice of letting go of who you think you should be and embracing who you really are.”

It wasn’t an easy transition. I had a lot of shame in my life. I didn’t want to own up to it either. But I did. I passed through the dark and I could finally see the light.

But one thing I did learn well. I learned and fully believe that I am worthy of love. I fully believe that I am enough just as I am. I don’t have to pretend and be a perfectionist anymore. I don’t have to perform for others so they will like and accept me. And the best is I don’t have to constantly please others all the time. I embrace that my imperfections, and I have many, are really gifts and that all people have them.

My mom never felt she was enough or worthy of love. Finally I could get rid of the anger I held for her. I saw her with compassion for the first time. I don’t know how my mom ever acquired her beliefs but she did. I released my mom to the other side knowing that I had reconciled in my heart that she never really meant to cause me pain and suffering. She was doing the only thing that ever seemed to work for her; please others and shame your kids into being good people.

Today I practice daily being authentic. So many wonderful things have happened to me since this discovery. No longer do I need to please others. Gads that alone freed up ton’s of wasted energy. With this new energy my business has skyrocketed. I’m able to connect with everyone at a deeper level. My relationships with my family have improved.

It’s still scary at times being open and vulnerable. There are some who do not like me for who I really am. That’s their problem. I feel good about me.

I am enough.

Got a mom like me? If so, there is hope.

Are the safety nets in your life holding you back from your dreams?

I’m always amazed and respectful of the journeys people have taken to get where they are at in life. I was reflecting on my journey and realize how grateful I am of my own painful journey.

god sized dreamsI’ve always had abundant dreams and knew someday they would come true. Ten years ago I retired from the CPA firm I was a partner at for over 20 years to pursue my dream of owning my investment and estate planning firm. It was so liberating! I felt FREE!

As I started that new journey so many things opened up to me. I found health and fitness. I did my first Ironman triathlon. I started to dream even bigger because I was enjoying time and a measure of financial freedom.

Then almost overnight in the bad economy of 2009 it all came crashing down. My income slashed by 70% and my net worth and retirement nest egg fell off the wall and I knew what Humpty Dumbty must have felt like. I was in shock. I was angry. I started to wonder if the CPA firm would take me back because after all there was a safety net there.

I realized that it was that safety net that held me from my dreams. So I faithfully pursued on.

I was open to all possibilities. I kept dreaming. I kept believing.

Then almost in a surreal moment the blessing with a better and new way was delivered to my doorstep in the form of an invitation. In a blink of an eye I had that aha moment and knew this was the path to my dreams.

I started part-time in my new at home business. I had used my hope to keep me going. That new adventure would prove the way to my dreams. I could see why I had to go through the pain of financial loss to then see the better way. My false security my investment business gave me closed my eyes to this path. The Universe wanted to deliver my dreams to me but my false belief of security kept me away from it. The Universe knew better and had to take control over my unfaithful and stubborn self.

I’m grateful for my hardship. I’m grateful for the painful journey. I’m grateful for the Universe and that all I needed to do was get on board of its dream train to take me to my destinations!

There a better way!