“Keep yourself clean and bright; you are the window through which you see the world.” — George Bernard Shaw
To awaken one’s authentic self is a call to connect with your deepest wisdom.
Reflect on the following questions for a moment.
What does authenticity mean to you?
How do you know if you are being authentic?
What measure of authenticity confirms you have connected with this ideal?
Let us take a step back before we delve into these questions by considering the following.
How do you know when someone is inauthentic? Is it via their language? Their body language? The way they dress, speak or facial expression?
With any luck, you may have some idea how to distinguish inauthenticity in others. Now consider this for a moment, what are other people’s impression of you when they met you for the first time?
In his book Mindwise, author Nicholas Epley states the following about our ability to differentiate what others think of us: “Knowing others’ minds requires asking and listening, not just reading and guessing.” He is of course inviting us to engage our other senses in order to ascertain more about the other person, rather than form an inaccurate picture in our mind.
To reveal your authentic nature, suspend your judgement about how life should or should not exist.
There is a level of discipline required to attend to those aspects which you dislike in yourself. It demands courage to face them through an inner conviction and self-compassion.
“To be nobody but myself-in a world which is doing its best, night and day, to make me somebody else-means to fight the hardest battle any human can fight, and never stop fighting.” — E. E. Cummings
Reflect on the following statement relating to how others may perceive you, “If I am aware of my limiting qualities, perhaps other people are also aware of them?”
Awakening your authentic self is a call to reconnect with your purposeful nature, rather than the egoistic mind, which rules your mental landscape.
Release the need to attain perfection, since it is merely a guise to protect you from attending to something deeper that requires transformation. Free yourself from needing to be right, by choosing happiness, abundance, joy and love instead.
Suspend your perception of how life should unfold or that it owes you something. Life does not serve to fulfil your every whim. You are the universal expression of life — it is your obligation to repay life by connecting with and revealing your authenticity.
Say “yes” to life. Affirm that what you want is what life also wants. The more you acknowledge yourself as playing a larger role within the infinite intelligence of the universe, the more life accepts your role within it.
Your authentic self reveals itself as life seeks to co-operate with you. In time, all your so called problems give way to new found blessings, opportunities and synchronicities, owing to the renewed sense of meaning and purpose, which you bring to life.
Your authentic self emerges as you develop a relationship with your deeper self. This means letting go of the false identity relating to who you think you should be and instead allows the real-self to emerge.
Similarly, the ego plays its part in constructing the false self by convincing you of your inauthenticity. It does this by bargaining in the form of reinforcing your unworthiness, via a detracted self-worth.
Every time you buy into this false premise, you strengthen the ego, by granting it power over you. The ego is self-serving and self-fulfilling — it needs to be nourished in order for it to thrive, otherwise it loses its identity.
Without an identity the ego cannot thrive, since it cannot sustain itself without a reinforced sense of self. Yet, if you contemplate the nature of the self, you see it is a mental construct of the mind in order to create your place in the world.
“The privilege of a lifetime is to become who you truly are.” — C.G. Jung
Author Michael Gazzaniga states in Who’s In Charge — Free Will and The Science of The Brain, about our sense of constructing an identity: “That you are so proud of is a story woven together by your interpreter module to account for as much of your behaviour as it can incorporate, and it denies or rationalizes the rest.”
As you weaken the identity of the egoistic self, you reconnect with your authentic self through your willingness to embrace your spiritual nature. Your spiritual nature is the unbound and infinite essence of your soul. It is who you are and will always be when you cease to identify with the mental construct of the self, in place of your soulful nature.
Stepping into the light of your authentic self emerges, as you drop the mental façade of the constructed self. Once you have let go of this image, you make room for the actual self to emerge, which is grounded in authenticity.
Secondly, strive to integrate your soulful nature and characteristics into the personality by merging with them. Remember, that which you oppose, you strengthen. That which you integrate into your experience, merges into the wholeness of your being.
Authenticity then is a move towards unity, wholeness and integration rather than separateness. You awaken your authentic nature when you integrate your shadow self into the wholeness of your being.
If you go to war with aspects of yourself which you deny, you give life to the ego as it strengthens its hold on you. As you connect with the wholeness of your being, appreciate that you maintain an egoistic self.
After all, since your default nature is spiritual, you unite to become entirely whole as distinct from the wounded or broken individual constantly seeking to be fixed.
Originally published at medium.com