Sometimes life can feel like a really cute pair of shoes that are a half size too small. You knew they would be uncomfortable, but your friend told you they looked amazing and you just couldn’t say no.
Too often, we put our real hopes, dreams, wants and needs on the back burner in order to meet someone else’s expectations. Or we shoehorn our aspirations and pretend we are living the dream.
These situations and feelings reflect a chronic failure of authenticity, which can open us up to all kinds of physical, emotional and psychological setbacks.
A quick, whole body scan can help you discover your “authenticity quotient” and make sure you’re living your own life, not someone else’s.
- Do you often pretend to understand something when really you don’t?
- Do you often do things you don’t want to do so you don’t disappoint people?
- Is there a big gap between the person you are right now and who you want to be?
- Do you feel you’re wandering aimlessly through life?
If you answered ‘yes’ to most of these questions, you’re definitely not living like you mean it. You’re living a life designed to satisfy others, not yourself.
Don’t panic. Here are three easy steps to reclaiming your life and becoming a resilient, authentic rockstar.
First, ask. The first step is to ask yourself, “Who’s life am I living?” Are you living out your parents’ expectations? Or maybe a fantasy you had when you were younger? Just because you wanted to be an astronaut when you were 4 years old does not mean you have to keep the dream alive.
Second, identify your values. Values inspire us to take committed action. They infuse our life with meaning and purpose. A good way to connect with your values is to think about life like a driver’s ed class. You’ve spent some time in the passenger seat and now it’s time to get behind the wheel. What kind of driver will you be? Cautious and careful or carefree and confident? How do you want your passengers to feel when they are in the car with you? Whatever you come up with are your values.
Third, act with intention. To live like you mean it requires committed action. What could you do differently, more of or less of to start living a more authentic life right now? Don’t try to boil the ocean. Commit to one small behavior and get moving.
The writer and broadcaster, Joseph Campbell, observed that some people get to the top of life’s ladder and realize it’s against the wrong wall. Living like you mean it guarantees it’s your ladder against your wall.
If you want to assess your own level of intention and action take the ARQ™. It will provide a great baseline to build from.
|INTENTION: Are you living an authentic life based upon a set of personal values or are you more concerned with fitting in and gaining approval for what you think or how to behave?|
|ACTION: Are you living an authentic life based upon a set of personal values or are you more concerned with fitting in and gaining approval for what you think or how to behave?|
|Learn more about intention, action, and your personal resilience at https://arq.rallybright.com|