The Great Imposter
A pretender, imposter, and a faker are defined as a person who pretends to be someone else to deceive others for personal gain, entertainment, or fraud.
We all are familiar with these terms. We watch the great pretenders on television, read about them in stories, and at times these are our closest friends, family members, and often times the great pretender is ourselves.
But why is that true of us? Why is it hard to be authentic? More importantly, why is it hard for you to be authentic? This is an all too important question, and at times, it is a question we often ignore and need to answer honestly.
Being our authentic self means what you say in life aligns with your actions. Your authentic self goes beyond what you do for a living, what possessions you own, or who you are to someone. It is who you are at your deepest core. It is about being true to yourself through your thoughts, words, and actions, and having these three areas match each other. When we aren't in touch with our authentic self, as people, we start to breakdown and lose sight of the gift of who we indeed are and are to become. Can you relate to this in your own life?
Here's a different perspective, when we see and hear about someone being dishonest, phony, faking, or just withholding the truth, many of us tend to get upset. Trust is broken,
doubt enters the mind, and quite frankly, this is quite hypocritical when it comes to authenticity. How? How can we expect authenticity when we are not doing, saying, living, or becoming totally authentic ourselves? People Pleasing is one of the largest traps to not being our best self. As people, we tend to live our lives based on obligations, roles, expectations, and living up to society's expectations of what I should be or do in life is often a very slippery slope. When we live like this, we prevent ourselves from living based on what we do have versus what we don't have and cannot attain. This doesn't make us "bad" or "wrong," it merely makes us human, but this isn't an excuse to continue this behavior. If we recognize it, we must work to push those things out.
What if people don't like me? When we lead with our authentic selves, there are some risks involved. If you are authentic to who you are and who you say you are, you are truly vulnerable. We can't control how people will respond to our authenticity and honesty. This shouldn't stop us from being our authentic selves. When we are authentic, we stay true to ourselves and who we genuinely are and are created to be. We remain present, happy, and follow our passions regardless of who we disappoint or how others view us. Living a life of authenticity is a constant effort; when we live with unauthentic actions and behaviors, we deny ourselves accepting who we truly are. We build walls, we wear masks, we create an alternative persona and universe. Being authentic provides others the opportunity to love us, accept us, and grow with us for who we are at our core. When we are authentic, we are vulnerable; we show all parts of us, the good with the bad. Allowing for more intimate and honest relationships, behaviors, work ethic, and allows for true acceptance.
There can be moments when we are genuinely expressing our authentic selves, and then
there are moments that trigger our inner wounds. We then find ourselves acting in a way that's out of alignment with our own inner truth and, instead, acting as a reaction to our wounds being reactivated. Keeping to ourselves and trying to fit in, as we all know from experience, doesn't work, feel good, or leads us to anything meaningful or fulfilling in life. This leads to resentment, frustration, disappointment, self-rejection, and in some cases, it is the cause of depression, anxiety, fear, stress, and worry. Pretending can be easy to do but comes with terrible consequences. Here's the thing, being your authentic self is a life-long process, but this doesn't mean that it's something we shouldn't aspire to. Just because it may take time and practice doesn't mean that you shouldn't put in the work. It's your life we are talking about. Life is a lifelong process, and we can make the most of it when we aim to be our authentic selves. First things first, let's take a personal inventory. I have four questions, just four, and I want you to think about them and answer them honestly.
What specific messages have you received throughout your life about being authentic and yourself that stop you from fully expressing yourself?
What are the main obstacles that get in your way of being real?
What are some of the biggest fears you have about being fully yourself, speaking your truth, and going for what you want in life?
What would you do differently in your life if you know you couldn't fail?
Genuinely think about these questions. What did you come up with? In asking these questions, you can and will open up some new ideas, insights, and possibilities for yourself and begin to work towards being your authentic self. Crescent's Reflected Best Self program; offers a unique feedback experience that counterbalances negative input. It allows you to tap into talents you may or may not be aware of, increase your career potential, and provides development towards being your authentic self. Now you might be telling yourself, I believe I am genuinely authentic, or at least I try to be. Here are 10 statements that represent an authentic person's behaviors, attitudes, and beliefs. Ask yourself if your thoughts and feelings match your actions in the following ways: