The Journey Towards My Authentic Self
This story was submitted anonymously to the How We Show Up collection as part of the July SEEQ sessions.
Who is my authentic self? I think it’s easier to describe how I’ve faked it — everyone’s familiar with ‘fake it ‘til you make it’. That seems clear to me. But what does ‘be yourself’ mean?
I’ve found on my life journey that I discover a new aspect of my authentic self on a regular basis. Sometimes that’s through my evolving relationship with my wife as we journey through growth, intimacy, and tackling life’s challenges together. Sometimes it’s been enabled by my experiences in nature where I find clarity in truths about not only myself, but also about my relationship within humanity, Earth, and the universe. At some periods of my life, it’s also come from THC and psychedelic enablers that dissolve my ego and ‘learned self’ into a space that enabled a truth to emerge or be interpreted through a lens that I hadn’t previous thought of.
As I thought through this story, I also got some clarity regarding the circumstances that I’ve faked it. In my corporate career, I saw alcohol as a means make it easier to fake it. It wasn’t only culturally established in the professional groups that I was in, it make it easier to BS my way toward gaining favor with the people who mattered to my career advancement. There’s something about the nature of corporations that made them fake to me. It wasn’t the exchange of value that was unnatural, that happens in nature as well, it’s doing so under a manufactured identify. And my experience as a corporate manager seemed to offer few, if any compromises, between my truer self that was emerging and the manufactured identity I felt like and was told on some occasions that I had to be.
In college, I learned how much I had to fake it in high school and how much that held me back. In the latter stages of my corporate career, I’d like to think that that lesson helped me steer sharply away in my corporate career before I fell too far below my values. And sitting here today two years later, I’d like to think that I am continuously shortening the process between getting caught in circumstances where I have to fake it and redirecting myself toward more authentic ones.