Authenticity: Celebrating the Real You
What does it mean to be authentic? It's a question that has intrigued philosophers, artists, and thinkers for centuries. Authenticity is a foundational concept in the realms of psychology, existential psychotherapy, existentialist philosophy, and aesthetics. Within the framework of existentialism, authenticity denotes the extent to which an individual's actions align with their deeply-held values and desires, even in the face of external pressures urging them to conform to societal norms [*ahem* cue my song "Puppet"].
What Is Authenticity?
In other words: at its core, authenticity is about embracing the real you, free from pretense, societal pressures, or external expectations. It's the art of living your truth.
Authenticity, in a philosophical sense, revolves around aligning your actions and behaviors with your true self. It's about being genuine, transparent, and true to your inner values and beliefs, irrespective of external influences. It means avoiding the pitfalls of conformity, inauthenticity, or pretense. Instead, it's choosing to embrace your unique identity.
The Emma G 3C-View of Authenticity
In my journey as a musician and empowerment coach, I've come to understand authenticity through what I like to call the "3C-View." It's a perspective that emphasizes three essential aspects of authenticity:
1. Being Candid: Authenticity begins with honest self-expression. It's about sharing your thoughts, feelings, and experiences without fear of judgment or rejection. While it might not always be comfortable, candidness is a vital component of being authentic.
2. Creativity in Being You: Authenticity isn't just about being candid but also about expressing your uniqueness creatively. Whether through art, music, dance, or any other medium, creative expression allows you to reveal your true self in a way that's honest, beautiful, and oftentimes feels safe.
3. Consistency in Values: Living authentically means staying true to your core values and principles. It's about maintaining consistency between your beliefs and actions, regardless of the roles you play in life.
But what are these values?
There are a number of key values that we might align with that - once realized - often lead to us finding our people. You've probably heard the saying "your vibe attracts your tribe". Simply put: when you find and stick to your values, others who share those values will be drawn to you.
Energy is everything.
Here's a quick recap of what some of those values might be:
Being Authentic in Different Roles
Living authentically doesn't mean you'll be the same in every situation or with every person. We all play various roles in our lives, whether as a parent, partner, friend, or professional. The key is to be true to yourself while navigating these roles, ensuring that your core values remain steadfast.
Live By Your Values
One of the cornerstones of authenticity is living by your values. Take a moment to reflect on what truly matters to you. What principles do you hold dear? These values serve as your compass, guiding you toward authentic choices and actions.
Identify the Gap
In our quest for authenticity, it's essential to identify the gap between who we are and who we want to be. Recognizing this disparity is the first step toward aligning our actions with our true selves. By acknowledging the gap, we can work on bridging it and moving closer to authentic living.
So why am I bringing this up today?
As my upcoming single, "The Way I Am," reminds us, authenticity isn't about making others comfortable; it's about being real. It's about embracing your unique identity and celebrating it. Honoring it. Respecting it.
Because you are the only you that exists - why compromise that simply make others feel comfortable?
Well, that's exactly the question that I was grappling with when I wrote the song at age 14.
Let me take you back a little bit.
I was fourteen years old, and - despite my outward appearance to most people - I was struggling. I'd been diagnosed with depression when I was 12years old [due to multiple traumas], and I really struggled to find my place.
I definitely found it difficult to be honest with those around me about what I was dealing with, and most of the time: I wasn't even able to be honest with myself.
That is, until I allowed myself to write music.
Music gave me subconscious permission to show up and be unapologetically me - without the pretending, without the mask, without the pressure to put other people's feelings before mine. Art is, after all, not meant to make us feel comfortable. It's just meant to make us feel something.
And music helped me take the things I was feeling and channel those feelings in a way that made me feel far more seen, validated, and - dare I say it? - even loved.
Living the Authentic Life
Living authentically can be challenging. It often means confronting fears, facing societal expectations, and navigating the complexities of identity. However, the rewards of authenticity are immeasurable. But when we choose to embrace our true selves, we unlock a world of opportunities:
Deeper Connections: Authenticity fosters genuine connections with others. When you're true to yourself, you attract people who appreciate and support the real you.
Inner Fulfillment: Living authentically brings a sense of inner fulfillment and purpose. It's the path to a more satisfying and meaningful life.
Positive Change: Authenticity inspires change and growth. By acknowledging your values and identifying the gap, you can embark on a journey of self-improvement and personal development.
Empowerment: Being authentic is empowering. It gives you the strength to navigate challenges and embrace your uniqueness. It's a powerful form of self-empowerment.
Authenticity through Music
In the lead up to "The Way I Am," which drops October 1: I encourage you to reflect on your own journey toward authenticity. How can you be more candid, creative, and consistent in your values? How can you live a life that truly represents who you are?
Stay tuned for the song's release on October 1 [you can pre-save now on iTunes], and let its message remind you that it's okay to be "The Way YOU are." Embrace your authenticity, and watch the transformative power it can have in your life.
When you're ready, here are the three main ways we can work together:
One on one coaching - helping you rewrite your perceptions of yourself, and the way the world perceives you: one powerful song at a time even if you've never written a song before. Perfect for those of you who are interested in unconventional coaching.
Commissioned song - harnessing your brand, business or organization in one powerful anthem that can be used for teambuilding and rapport, brand-building, and advertising. Perfect for companies wanting to enhance or improve workplace culture, and are mission, vision, and purpose oriented.
Edutainment + workshopping - using keynote speaking and music together to elevate your business, organization or event. Perfect for event planners and coordinators who are looking for something impactful for their next retreat, conference, or training day.