Why it’s hard to be who you are.

-Despite the risks, there’s an upside to being more authentic.

Being authentic begins with honesty about your feelings, thoughts, and aspirations without self-deception. It involves embracing your strengths and limitations, aligning with your values, and pursuing your passions.

This self-awareness fosters personal growth, resilience, and a genuine connection with others, forming a foundation for a fulfilling life.

The trouble is, that many of us are afraid of authenticity. We know if we did get honest with ourselves, our whole lives might be turned upside down.

Change is hard, but living in quiet desperation is even more challenging.

David Perell is a fascinating young writer with a successful online writing school called Write of Passage. I found this essay he wrote to be stunning and spot on for the situations some of my coaching clients find themselves in.

I’ve copied it here for you. If you like his writing, please visit his website.

Surrendering to Your Nature
We don’t choose our gifts. They choose us.

A mark of maturity is surrendering to the person you actually are instead of the one you wish you were. Most people never get such clarity, and they’re stunted for life.

The decision to surrender to your gifts is more painful than you’d think. You can’t really choose what you’re able to be excellent at because nobody has a say over the hand that nature deals. (Unfortunately, I’ll never become a professional golfer.) Instead, if you’re going to be world-class, you have to align yourself with your fingerprint. In our insanely competitive world, surrendering to your talents is your only chance at becoming world-class at what you do.

I suspect less than 10% of people ever surrender to who they really are. They spend their whole lives trying to fulfill a fake and manufactured image. And so, they get trapped in hollow careers and meaningless pursuits where they’re forced to be somebody they’re not — the stuff of a cold and haunting misery.

Surrender is terrifying at first. It comes with a loss of control. Chances are, you’ll disappoint your parents, teachers, and probably even yourself. If you’re doing it right, you may even pursue low-status projects. Hate to break it to you, but the vision you’ve always had for your future also won’t come true because that vision was predicated on the person you wish you were, not the person you actually are.

What feels like the death of your dreams is actually the birth of something much more profound.

There’s ease on the other side of surrender.

The flow of effortlessness is waiting for the alignment of your mind, body, and spirit — when you’re simultaneously surprising yourself and doing everything that would’ve made your 8-year-old self proud.

Till next week,
Jo-Aynne Von Born, Leadership and Executive Coaching

Work Your Authentic Genius.
In what way might you be living in a state of self-deception? What are the consequences to your career, relationships and mental health if you continue this way? How would it feel to finally be aligned, as David says, “mind, body and spirit?”

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