Community//

Why Being Your Authentic Self Matters

I'm not showing up as my representative. I'm coming as my genuine self. You can decide if you're willing and able to handle the entire package-or not.

The Thrive Global Community welcomes voices from many spheres on our open platform. We publish pieces as written by outside contributors with a wide range of opinions, which donโ€™t necessarily reflect our own. Community stories are not commissioned by our editorial team and must meet our guidelines prior to being published.

๐— ๐—ฎ๐—ป๐˜† ๐—ช๐—ผ๐—บ๐—ฒ๐—ป ๐—Ÿ๐—ผ๐˜€๐—ฒ ๐—ง๐—ต๐—ฒ๐—ถ๐—ฟ ๐—ฃ๐—ผ๐˜„๐—ฒ๐—ฟ ๐—”๐—ป๐—ฑ ๐—ง๐—ต๐—ฒ๐—ถ๐—ฟ ๐—ฉ๐—ผ๐—ถ๐—ฐ๐—ฒ ๐—ช๐—ต๐—ฒ๐—ป ๐—ง๐—ต๐—ฒ๐˜† ๐—–๐—ต๐—ผ๐—ผ๐˜€๐—ฒ ๐—ง๐—ผ ๐—ฆ๐—ต๐—ผ๐˜„ ๐—จ๐—ฝ ๐—œ๐—ป ๐—ฅ๐—ฒ๐—น๐—ฎ๐˜๐—ถ๐—ผ๐—ป๐˜€๐—ต๐—ถ๐—ฝ๐˜€, ๐—ฅ๐—ผ๐—บ๐—ฎ๐—ป๐˜๐—ถ๐—ฐ ๐—ฎ๐—ป๐—ฑ ๐—ข๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ๐—ฟ๐˜„๐—ถ๐˜€๐—ฒ, ๐—”๐˜€ ๐—ง๐—ต๐—ฒ๐—ถ๐—ฟ ๐—ฅ๐—ฒ๐—ฝ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ๐˜€๐—ฒ๐—ป๐˜๐—ฎ๐˜๐—ถ๐˜ƒ๐—ฒ ๐—”๐—ป๐—ฑ ๐—ก๐—ผ๐˜ ๐—ง๐—ต๐—ฒ๐—ถ๐—ฟ ๐—š๐—ฒ๐—ป๐˜‚๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ฒ ๐—ฆ๐—ฒ๐—น๐˜ƒ๐—ฒ๐˜€.

Chris Rock has a stand-up routine where he says that when you meet someone for the first time, youโ€™re not meeting that person โ€” youโ€™re meeting his or her representative.

And therein lies a big problem. Whatever expectations you establish upfront have now laid the foundation for what will be expected going forward.

When youโ€™re dating a potential spouse, and youโ€™re cooking and cleaning as if you love it, guess what heโ€™s going to expect when youโ€™re married?

Tell a potential employer how you are relentless when it comes to XYZ and how you love a good challenge, no matter how many hours you have to put it in. Guess what they will expect when youโ€™re hired.

One of the critical areas of any relationship that is essential to its success, to ensure that each individualโ€™s needs are met, is honest conversation โ€“ from the start.

Far too often, thirst for something or someone supersedes truth, and there goes the risk of losing your voice and your power. Negotiations become difficult when you have boldly said what you said, and did what you did. But now you want to ask for a do-over when the weight of your decision becomes too much.

To be fully empowered, confidence and self-esteem must not be compromised. In other words, โ€œYou canโ€™t be hesitant about who you are.โ€ โ€”Viola Davis.

During our dating stage, I was clear with my husband-to-be about the concept of โ€œrolesโ€ should we get married. While I love to cook, I wouldnโ€™t be doing it every night, in fact, seldom during the workweek. We both had demanding careers and traveled extensively. Housecleaning wasnโ€™t a womanโ€™s job, in my opinion โ€“ itโ€™s the occupants of the homeโ€™s responsibility. I may be pregnant, but WE are raising the children. The word โ€œobeyโ€ was not in my wedding vows.

I knew what I wanted in a relationship and was honest upfront. No representative. My husband knew what he was getting from the start from this sassy Leo woman, and he apparently liked the whole package. As the phrase goes โ€“ โ€œFind the lid to your pot!โ€

Of course, we had our moments when one of us attempted to cross boundaries, feign amnesia when it came to certain established expectations, or we simply needed to agree to compromise. Hell, life happens, and relationships consist of giving and taking โ€“ within reason.

However, because I presented my genuine self from the start (and so did he), my voice nor my power were in jeopardy of being silenced during the relationship. Unless of course, I chose for them to be, and that in itself is power.

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