It is exhausting to pretend to be someone we’re not. We do a lot of things to fit in, including lie about our tastes and interests, our opinions and even our personalities. We try to convince ourselves we are a certain way or like certain things, all because we think we should. Being anything other than our authentic selves is tiresome, and eventually the truth always comes out. It’s far more rewarding, not to mention easier, to just be ourselves!
On this topic, Anne Wilson Schaef writes:
“We live in an addictive, white-male system that is innately foreign to women, and one which we have come to believe that we have to learn and participate in to survive. This is not reality—it is a system, and as a system holds no more truth than any other system. Unfortunately we have been taught that it is reality, although at some level all of us know it isn’t. Also, unfortunately, this system thrives on addictions and requires them in order for us to tolerate it. Fortunately, we do have other options.”
There was a time I believed that in order to succeed in a predominantly male corporate business culture, I had to present myself in a certain way. It was all in my head of course, but I thought if I didn’t act outgoing and bold, if I didn’t dress in business professional wear, if I showed a preference for anything too girly, I wouldn’t be taken seriously. I concealed my true preferences, feelings, and opinions because I believed I had to act a certain way in order to be successful. This is not reality, of course, but a twisted perception I have based on deeply held beliefs. I have learned, mainly through keeping this blog and experiences in my career so far, that it is far easier on our souls and minds if we are just honest about what we want and who we are. When we embrace our true selves, the exhausting uphill battle against our inner nature can finally cease. We don’t have to pretend. The world is big enough for all of us, and we can succeed exactly as we are. Our success will feel better too, because we will succeed not as empty shells of ourselves, but the true deep down authentic selves.