I recently made a commitment to myself to live completely authentically. When I made this decision, I knew within my heart that it was time to shed anything and everything that was not in line with who I felt I truly was. All I wanted was to just be me, and to live my life as I had always dreamed.
This decision meant letting go of many of my old habits. I gave up trying to change myself in order to win the love and approval of others. I let go of allowing my fear-driven voice to hold me back. I stopped giving my time and energy to activities that did not fulfil me. And the biggest step of all was when I decided I was no longer going to suppress my natural gifts and talents and neglect doing the work I truly loved. And so, I took the leap. I quit my job and jumped full time in to working for myself as a life coach and writer.
The decision to live an authentic life requires courage and inner strength. You must get completely honest with yourself and make a heart-strong commitment to be true to yourself. It requires letting go of the old and shedding parts of yourself. It also requires a willingness to embrace what is new and unfamiliar. It can be scary path, but the fulfilment and happiness that comes from living authentically is powerful enough to override any fear.
So, are you living authentically? These 3 questions will help you find out.
1. Do you know who you are?
Living authentically is about living your truth. Expressing who you really are. Sharing your natural gifts and talents. Being yourself. However, if you do not know who you really are, how can you possibly live authentically?
Ask yourself – What are my natural gifts and qualities? What are my strengths and talents? What am I passionate about? Who am I, really?
Meditate. Spend time in stillness. Connect with yourself. Use journalling to uncover your inner thoughts. Listen to your inner whisper, the wisdom of your intuition and what your heart calls you to do.
Until you have a crystal clear sense of who you are, and you have developed a strong and beautiful connection with yourself, it will be very difficult to live authentically.
2. Are you doing what you love?
Living authentically is about allowing yourself to be driven by your heart, not your head. To live authentically you must find and connect with what it is that you truly love to do. It is no longer enough to just do something that you think or are good at, or that you have some interest in. It is time to discover what you truly love and to have the courage to admit to yourself what that might be.
Once you discover it, to live authentically you must follow it. You must allow your love and passion to be the driving force behind all that you do.
So, ask yourself – Am I doing what I love? Or, do I even know what I love? If you answered no to either of these questions, it is time to dig deep and do some soul searching!
3. Are you on purpose?
The decision to live authentically requires you to create a big over-arching why behind all that you do. You must discover your personal driving force. What is it that gets you up in the morning and pulls you forward? What is your personal mission?
When we live without a purpose we often feel lost and confused. We may become easily discouraged, and struggle to make decisions about what the right thing is to do.
Connecting with your purpose provides clarity, a sense of direction and a powerful motivation. Your purpose is often a combination of something you love, which also serves the world in some way.
By connecting with yourself, you will open the doors to help discover your purpose. You can also begin to look at the ‘why’ behind all that do. What is the current driving force behind all of your decisions and actions? Why do you do what you do?
Once you do the work to discover what you love, you can then see how this is linked to your purpose. What are you here to contribute to the world? How can you serve? What can you create? What legacy can you leave behind?
By connecting with your purpose you will discover a new sense of meaning in your life. And from this place you will be able to live authentically with love, passion and fulfilled.
Do you strive to live authentically, or do you know that you need to do more work in this area? I’d love to hear your thoughts on this topic in the comments below.
Author bio: Connie is transformational life coach, health-food lover and writer of the inspiration-filled blog a life of perfect days. She has a burning passion for empowering others to tap in to their potential and live out their best life. You can read more from Connie at her blog or connect with her on Facebook or Twitter