By Christy McCaffrey
What does it mean to be authentically true to yourself? Well, it starts with connecting to and better defining what feels authentically true for you. From a young age we are bombarded with, and oftentimes overwhelmed by, the opinions and ideas of the world around us. And sometimes, amidst all this, it can be really challenging to grasp what it is that is true and authentic to us when we feel so much pressure to either fit in or to gain the approval of those whose opinions matter most to us. But that is exactly why it’s necessary to create some inner self-awareness and to gain a better understanding of what is true for you so that you can begin to separate your own wants, needs, and desires, from the wants, needs, and desires of those around you. When you begin to create some inner space for yourself you can better identify what feels true and aligned for you. Connecting to this authentic space within yourself will allow you to create a deep awareness and appreciation for what makes you uniquely YOU, and it will help you better understand how valuable it can be to ground yourself in your own truth.
This can take some bravery and might seem a little scary at first, but if you take the time to ask yourself some important questions you will gain more clarity around who you authentically are and thus will begin to feel more confident and comfortable with owning that authenticity. Taking time for yourself to reflect on your dreams, goals, and desires can help you to step away from the pressures of the world for a moment and allow you to gain a clearer perspective of what it is that really matters most to you.
Some valuable questions to ask yourself would be: (jot down your answers in a journal or on a piece of paper)
1. How do I want to feel on a daily basis?
2. What is my greatest hope, dream or vision for myself?
3. What activities or creative outlets make me feel most alive and excited?
4. If I were to remove any fear, doubt, or any other obstacle that might stand in my way, what is the truest dream I have in my heart for my future?
5. What unique gifts or talents do I have to offer the world that could benefit someone else in a positive way?
6. What are my favorite qualities about myself? What are my greatest strengths?
7. Who or what makes me feel most supported and free to be myself?
8. What values are most important to me when it comes to friendships or relationships?
9. How can I cultivate more self-love and self-care?
10.How can I best show up for myself and move towards my authentic dreams, goals and desires?
As a young woman, there is truly no better time than now to begin to cultivate the practice of introspection, taking stock of what matters most to you and getting honest with yourself about what it is that you need to do, feel, or experience that will ultimately help you feel more supported from within. Gaining a clear connection to your authentic desires and needs will ultimately help you begin to build a solid foundation of inner strength. From this strengthened place, you can then begin to step up as your own greatest cheerleader and support system. This new perspective will also offer you a greater level of confidence and better prepare you to handle any challenges that might come your way.
It’s important to keep in mind that your dreams, goals and desires are naturally going to shift and change just as you too will grow and evolve as a person. Therefore, it is important to remember to be gentle with yourself and your dreams – allowing yourself the space and time to grow and allowing your dreams the space and time to take shape. What is meant for you will always find you if you remain open and committed to an authentic path. Remaining true to yourself will always guide you in the right direction.
What does it mean to stay grounded in authenticity? It simply means to commit to making yourself and your ever-evolving wants, needs, desires, dreams and goals, a priority. It means owning the fact that who you are is absolutely, brilliantly, and powerfully unique and that your willingness to show up as your authentic self is one of the bravest, most powerful and rewarding things you will ever do in your life. Your unique authentic truth is something the world desperately needs and can endlessly benefit from. Taking care of yourself, honoring what is true and authentic for you and remaining committed to an ongoing journey of introspection will allow you to live a life of deep purpose and joy and will naturally guide you towards achieving your most authentic goals. This life is yours to create and staying grounded in your authentic truth will ensure that you will cultivate a life that you are genuinely proud of. Stay true to yourself, stay authentic, and most importantly shine your own unique light into the world!
About the author, Christy McCaffrey:
Christy is a wife, mom to 3, non profit director, speaker, podcast host and writer/producer born and raised just outside of Philadelphia, PA, where I live and work today.