27 Feb Success Through Authenticity: Finding Your Own Answers
Every once in a while I take some time to be quiet. I don’t have to have my eyes closed, though I usually do. I don’t need to be in a special place. There are no props or requirements. I just have to remember to breathe. Usually, I remember when the world seems like it’s moving too fast. I take a second to just breathe. Clarity is the reward.
It’s a trick I learned while attending a ten-day silent retreat. By day three of silence, I was noticing a completely different world from the one I usually live in. It was a quiet world, but it was full of action. The mundane became awesome. The chatter in my mind calmed. Now, when I notice the chatter, I think myself back to that place of calm. A couple of minutes of quiet isn’t enough to make the mundane awesome, but it is enough to bring me back to my authentic self.
Ensuring that every decision I make, every action I take, and every thought I entertain is aligned with my own personal values has been key to my happiness and success. It’s harder than it sounds, and it can’t be done from a place of chatter. People are conditioned to search for external validation. First, we wanted our parents’ approval. Then it was our teachers, friends, lovers. By the time we stop to wonder whether we ourselves approve, we often realize we never took the time to ask. Now, I take the time to ask. I find that all the answers I have been looking for were here all along. I already know how to infuse my life with meaning. My inner truth, my authenticity, was quietly waiting to be acknowledged, and so is yours.
Find Your Inner Truth
As a recovering overachiever, I understand the desire to read all the books, ask all the people, and do all the things. I also understand that doing all the things can prevent you from doing the important things well. Clutter gets in the way of clarity. That understanding is a crucial part of the recovery process.
When I first started my business, I spoke to what felt like a million people. I wanted to know all about their experiences and fully understand what I was getting into. The fact is, I couldn’t. My business is different. I’m different. My experiences are uniquely my own, and I need to navigate them using my own compass. The most important person I needed to consult in my journey was myself. In many ways, the well-meaning advice that I fervently collected became more distracting than useful. Instead of helping me to focus and clarify my vision, all these discrete pieces of other people’ experiences left me overwhelmed. It wasn’t until I cut through other people’s advice that I was able to find my own way into a meaningful business and life. I needed less so that I could get to more.
In the same way, your experiences are uniquely your own. The most important person in your journey, the person who is going to give you the very best advice, is yourself. This applies to so much more than business. Relationships, love, loss, meaning, and purpose are all areas where your intuition is paramount to success. Self-reflection, quiet, and trust in yourself are the only tools you need to unlock your true potential and become your authentic self.
We all have negative stories running through our heads. They can be accidentally planted by a single experience that has been blown out of proportion, or a thoughtless comment that you’ve taken to heart. Often, we don’t even know that these stories exist, much less that they are holding us back. They can be propagated by self-doubt, denial, or fear. They kill our inspiration and distort our purpose. When you listen to yourself, these stories fade, and you can acknowledge your own heart’s desires. You will also realize your own ability to bring these desires to fruition. You will know beyond a shadow of a doubt that you are enough. You are strong, complete, and bursting with potential. Enjoy simply being enough.
Live Your Purpose
When you listen to yourself and align your actions with your own inner truth, an amazing thing happens. You tap into your own strength and wisdom. You find yourself invigorated by your own values, authentically living your purpose. Inspiration erupts. Your heart’s desires are satisfied. This can take many forms. In fact, it must take many forms. Living your purpose is uniquely your own. It is personal, provocative, and priceless. Once you’ve tapped into your own authenticity and creative energy, it is also effortless.
Living your purpose isn’t something that you necessarily aim to do. It is the natural result of a life lived in consult with your inner voice. It is the byproduct of a process that starts with trusting yourself. This process does not end. There are no maps to follow or outcomes to expect. It is as continuous an evolution as that of your own person. You may find your values shift, your focus transfer, your insights change. Living your purpose requires re-evaluation and growth. Keep reflecting and challenging yourself. It isn’t a game to be won, but a journey to be enjoyed.
Enjoy Authentic Success
The joy of knowing yourself, sharing inspiration, and living your purpose is the most amazing gift that exists. It adds meaning to everything you do. It is a gift all on its own. As a bonus, however, the world falls into place around you when you’re living your purpose.
Suddenly the tasks on your to-do lists take on different meanings. The busy work you have been stressing over disappears as you choose to focus on the tasks you always knew to be most important. Momentum builds. Synergy sings. The results are stunning. I can’t know the particulars because they are specific to each individual, but one thing I do know is that people who are true to themselves and living their own purpose accomplish amazing things.
Inspiration inspires, authenticity frees, and passion ignites passion.
By living your truth, you also give others permission to do the same. If there is anything more blessed than one person living their truth, it is a community of authentic people living side-by-side. Build it in yourself, and your community will come.