I have a little trouble with how we throw around the word authentic. We use other words too to describe the term to like, real, honest and transparent.
The problem with the term is when it comes to describing people. Or when you describe your own thoughts or feelings.
Most of the time we are never really authentic.
We are always in a change mode and our being authentic depends on the circumstances.
The idea that we can be totally ourselves in all situations is rather futile.
It doesn’t mean that we should be fake and that we should lie about who we are. Although many people do lie and don’t act or react in truth.
But, we need to admit we would act differently depending on the situation.
Couples come to me in counseling and act much differently in front of me than they would when they are alone.
In some situations I put enough pressure on the couple so they might even get into an argument or react as if I wasn’t there. This gives me a small glimpse at the couples true interactions.
We can move to better understanding when I get this view of truth in their relationship.
We need to understand that we are always under construction.
We change based on our learning, knowledge and circumstances.
This change is a good thing.
I do not want to be the “authentic” person I was in middle school.
It is the hope that we mature and change with all we have encountered in life up to this moment.
This idea of being authentic is malleable and flexible. As it should be.
I was fascinated as a high school teacher when prom came around. The grubby, sometimes foul mouthed kids that I new in class became these shiny young adults when then had to wear a tux and prom dress. They walked and talked differently. Some very uncomfortably.
The point is that based on the conditions we reshape the authenticity that we are.
We are a work in progress and our “authenticity” should be in flux as we grow and mature.
Much of our authenticity depends on the moment.
That’s OK as long as we understand that we will change, that we encourage change and recognize the change when it occurs.
Being real, transparent and authentic comes as we grow and change.
Understand that being authentic means being able to change, adapt and mature. Work towards being complete and whole.
Trouble with being the real you? Let’s talk @
Frank J Walker LMFT
1617 Main Street
Cambria, Ca. 93428
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