Authentic. The genuine article. The real McCoy. The real deal like Holyfield.
The notion of “To thine own self, be true” is one that’s resonated with people for a very long time. Like, easily longer than The Simpsons has been on TV. For real… THAT long. Despite the seeming impossibility, it’s true.
I am fortunate enough to have two similar, but distinct forums from which to speak in the most authentic way I can: a blog I do at work and the humble blog you read this very moment. The topics of the two are different. My work blog is about business ethics and is targeted to thousands of colleagues I am fortunate to have in my company. This blog is about… hmm… truth be told, it’s sometimes a little tricky to describe this blog succinctly. If I were pressed, I would say this blog is about my own journey to make myself a little better daily and share that story with you I hopes you can do the same. How’s that sound? Copacetic?
While the exact topic of any given blog post I do on either blog can vary, the most critical goal I have… besides writing something worth reading… is for the message to be completely authentic to who I am if you just walked up to me to have a chat. I cannot stress enough how important I think this is because I think those who lack authenticity lack any staying power with their message. Plus, it just comes across as disingenuous and maybe even flat out dishonest.
I think that’s a huge reason why I have such a disdain for most Internet forums or the comments that follow many Web articles: they tend to be places where people lob verbal grenades from the safety of hiding behind their monitors. Ugh. Or why I don’t just blindly follow anyone who follows me on Twitter. If all you have to “say” is a solely links to the content of others without even a single personal observation or shred of insight, then consider me uninterested.
I write what I would say if you were standing in front of me. The weird and quirky (to put it mildly) sense of humor? Yeah, that’s me. The yearning to press myself to do a little more and be a little better, but without feeling like I’m somehow incomplete? That’s this handsome kid right here.
In the end, I may not be perfect… but at least I’m me at all times.
2 Replies to “Authenticity: The Fine Art of Just Being Yourself”
To thine own self, be true. Frankly, that’s been kind of hard lately. When the world drops a load of crap on me, my first instinct is to push back – hard. But, I have a wife and I need the steady income, so I eat my pride and continue on. I live in a State where the liberals rule supreme. The inner me wants to man the barricades and scream out, “I’m mad as hell and I’m not going to take it anymore!” – but I do. I look around and I hardly recognize this world and worse, sometimes I don’t even recognize myself.
It’s a tough road to travel, no doubt about it, Al. Compromises must be made and I don’t think of them as being inauthentic, per se, but more assessing what you value most and then working to put that first. In your case, your wife matters more than sounding off on someone and there ain’t nothin’ wrong with that.