Thursday, January 13, 2011

Fear Factor - part 3

As I begin the third and final post on this subject I wish I would have named it something different from the beginning. But alas, hindsight is always better than foresight.

Catch up Here first.
Then read the middle part Here.

Step Six: Be Your Authentic Self
"One of the most common fears is the fear of simply being ourselves, especially when we end up in unfamiliar or uncomfortable situations--when we're 'fish out of water.' Thus, many of us tend to shy away from the attention that may come from being different. As a result, we try to hide who we truly are. We don't want to stand out, so we may find ourselves doing everything possible to stamp out our individuality in favor of conformity. We then wind up projecting an image we assume, and hope, will please others. That's one road you can choose to travel when you're feeling out of place. The other is to celebrate who you are without apology.
     'Let's face it, no one wants to be rejected. And yet, think about the people you truly admire in this world. Without a doubt, they conduct their lives with authenticity and conviction, and to realize your full potential, you'll need to do the same."

I saved this last one for it's own day because I think it is so powerful. And so important. The idea of being comfortable in your own skin is, after all, what I am striving for. I have lived my life trying not to cause waves. If something I say or do might be considered out of the norm I generally avoid it. Oh yes, I am weird and I have let a little of that show now and again, but in reality I have spent so much time and energy just trying not to stand out that I sometimes wonder who I really am.

And some days I don't know the answer to the question: What is my authentic self? I know what many people think I am: responsible, bossy, junk food addict. I know many things I would like to be: Super skinny, a social butterfly, confident, healthy. But what am I in reality? And then when I really stop and think I realize I would rather be happy in my own skin than trying to be something I am not.

I think that is what living fearlessly really is all about, living in a way that honors your authentic self. When you live that way you won't be afraid to try new things that you have always wanted to try. You will have the courage and confidence to live a full and happy life. The life you truly want and deserve.

Keep things in perspective. Take everything one step at a time, one day at a time. And be the person you really are.

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