Living an authentic life
I don’t know why or how I had thought that living an authentic life is what I am going to be doing. I guess I was tired, of the games that people play, of the numerous white lies that people tell, the choices that we are forced to make because that’s what is expected of us. I guess I had finally reached a stage in my life where I looked back and looked forward and remembered that conversation between the cat and Alice when she reached a fork in the road.
“Would you tell me, please, which way I ought to go from here?”
“That depends a good deal on where you want to get to,” said the Cat.
“I don’t much care where–” said Alice.
“Then it doesn’t matter which way you go,” said the Cat.
“–so long as I get SOMEWHERE,” Alice added as an explanation.
“Oh, you’re sure to do that,” said the Cat, “if you only walk long enough.”
I was like Alice, I was walking alright, to get somewhere. I was also a zombie, you know, eyes closed, brain on shut down mode, just going through the motions and getting through the business of living life (or so I had thought). Marriage, child, job, friends, family, fulfilling responsibilities and discharging duties. I was also deeply unhappy with where I was in my life. But it took over a decade for the unhappiness to ferment to the point where I finally woke up to the path that I was walking on and instead ask myself where I genuinely wanted to go.
Turns out, where I wanted to go, was where I would be happy.
So I sat down, looked back over the last 30 years of my life and wrote a list of things that would make me happy. It included everything from owning my own home, to changing careers, to traveling and learning to play music. The thing that stood out most though was that I wanted to be happy with myself and I guess thus my journey began to live my own authentic life.
Unfortunately it means saying ‘no’ to things that I had routinely said ‘yes’ to before. (yeah, not easy on the family gatherings or those who asked for loans routinely). It also meant saying ‘yes’ to things that I had routinely said ‘no’ to. I was suddenly exploring all options, not saying ‘no’ meant that there was more ways to get to my destination then just the one that had approval of everyone else. I picked up a bunch of sayings along the way to be the guiding post along my journey.
“When you say YES to others, make sure that you are not saying NO to yourself”
“If it’s not beautiful, useful or enriching to my life, whatever ‘it’ is, it doesn’t have a place in my life”
“Energy must flow in order to circulate. Same for money, emotions, careers & people”
“People will come into my life for a reason, a season or a lifetime.” The trick is in knowing which is which and then letting them go.
The reason I am thinking of all this today is probably because all the soul-searching along the way has ultimately lead to just ONE change in my life. Just one! At any point in time, all I had to really do, is just be honest with myself and others. It’s not easy. It meant questioning everything that I do, every reason that I have for doing or not doing things. It meant that more often than not, I fell out with people. I was saying things that I would have swallowed before, I was expressing feelings that I never knew I had, opinions that were formed and changed if logic prevailed otherwise. But at the end of the day, it meant that I slept easy, loved my life and everything that I have in it. By no means has this journey ended yet. It’s a work in progress but everyday it brings me closer to the kind of life that I love living, every single day.
- Transparency, Authenticity and Accountability (butterfly-maiden.com)
- From Regret to Authentic Life: A Tarot Spread (jameswells.wordpress.com)
- Die Authentic – By Hesham Abu Mariah (bettermypsyche.wordpress.com)
- Being Authentically Me (stuffmybrainthinks.com)
- Be Your Authentic Self (ejaife.wordpress.com)
- The Search For Authentic Fellowship (amomlookingup.wordpress.com)
- Who are you? (scottbramdotme.wordpress.com)