If you are interested in living authentically but aren’t sure how — this article is for you.
The importance of authenticity is clear. Movies, musicals, and even academic literature discuss the importance of living true to yourself.
What is not clear is how to live authentically. The remainder of this article looks to remedy that issue by introducing the Four Components of Authenticity™ and providing a set of helpful guidelines for authentic living.
Let's start by defining authenticity. Beginning with the definition makes sure you and I are on the same page. Then, I'll describe the Four Components of Authenticity™ and share authenticity guidelines for each component.
Authenticity — Defined
Thankfully, Dr. Brené Brown breaks down authenticity very clearly in her book The Gifts of Imperfection.
“Authenticity is the daily practice of letting go of who we think we’re supposed to be and embracing who we are.
Choosing authenticity means:
I love this definition. Compared to other definitions of authenticity that I’ve seen over the years, this definition is special for two reasons:
For these reasons, this definition is perfect to use as the foundation for our guidelines!
Guidelines for authentic living
In the section below, I've broken down Dr. Brown's authenticity definition into Four Components of Authenticity™ — self-knowledge, courage, compassion, connection.
When implemented correctly, the guidelines help you cultivate authenticity and enable you to live a life true to yourself.
However, there is a danger to watch out for. If you are not mindful, your limiting beliefs and perspectives will cause authenticity-crushing “self-talk.” This harmful “self-talk” will corrupt your implementation of the guidelines and hold you back from living authentically.
I've assigned each component a daily practice and an authenticity guideline — the authenticity guideline describes how to put the daily practice into action. Also, to help you make the most of each authenticity guideline and avoid the danger described above, I’ve included common missteps to keep an eye out for below. Reflecting and staying aware will help you observe your potential missteps and harmful “self-talk.” Once you observe your destructive “self-talk,” you’ll be able to replace it with messages that empower you to implement the guidelines and live authentically.
Authenticity Component #1:
Embrace who you are
Authenticity Component #2:
Authenticity Component #3:
Authenticity Component #4:
My aim in creating this three-part series is to make it faster and easier for you to enjoy the benefits of living true to yourself.
In Part 1, I shared why authenticity matters. In this part, I introduced you to four guidelines to cultivate authenticity. The next (and last) part is focused on putting the guidelines into practice.
Over the years, I’ve studied and implemented at least 10 different methodologies to live more authentically. However, the system that unified all of the methods together is Human Design.
In the last article in this series, I'll introduce you to the Human Design system. The article describes how to use Human Design to empower authentic living and efficiently implement the daily practices described above. At the end of the article, I'll invite you to use the Human Design system through the tools I've created here at Live Your Design.
Are you ready for the next step? Click here to continue with Part 3: Practicing Authenticity.