What Is An Authentic Person?

Last night I attended a talk and discussion at Naropa University in their Authentic Leadership Series. Peter Goldmark presentation was titles “Non-Profits, On Your Mark: Running the Most Important Race Humans Have Ever Run." He is a person dedicated to saving the environment and is fully living his purpose. He feels all of us out there running NGO’s (non-government organizations) are making a difference in the world. His passion, his heart, his wisdom was shared about the important of everyone doing what they know they must do and how important that is today. I found him authentic and inspirational. I have been very fortunate lately with so much inspiration available through talks, reading, videos and other resources. I feel grateful for all this.

I was thinking what is an authentic person. The qualities that come to mind are: genuine, real, purposeful, spontaneous, passionate, creative, self-realizing, open, understanding, inclusive, self-aware, accepting of who they are and free to express their uniqueness. These qualities add up to the kind of person I want to be and I suspect so do you?

Let’s talk about some of these qualities and how you and I can nurture them in us. Genuineness and realness are two qualities that share similarities. To be genuine and to be real means you have to have some sense of who you are. This sense of self allows you to be in the world as you are. A genuine person is real with themselves and others. The need for approval does not drive a genuine person. Being real often means doing what you know is right for you even though others may want you to be more conforming.

Having a purpose and living it passionately is what an authentic person does. If you know who you are, what your mission is in this life and you live it as full as possible, you are true to yourself.

With authenticity comes a flow of creativity and spontaneity. Following the flow of who you are opens you to much inspiration and inner guidance. You tend to be responsive and intuitive in a relaxed and easy manner. You can be real in the moment and that can be a real joy to be around.

Self-realizing is a great making quality of the authentic person. To live with the intention and commitment of realizing your potential, is truly a powerful way to be in the world. Exploring and expressing your highest possibilities is of true benefit to the planet.

Open and inclusive are qualities that show expanded consciousness. When you drop your need to be run by judgments you open yourself to accept and include people of all ways of life, cultures and beliefs. This inclusive way of being in the world shows a real comfort with who you are and an openness to be with who others are.

So how do you grow the authentic you? Begin first by committing yourself to accept who you are. Drop the self-judgment and be simply ok with who you are. That will take some practice because most likely you have been conditioned to believe more in what others consider your faults. You are much more then any limitations you may have picked up along the way

Developing a more objective observer in you will help you grow as a human being and encourage you being authentic. Meditation and other contemplative practices are very helpful in your pursuit of realness and in helping you to see yourself with greater impartiality. Keeping a journal of what you learn about yourself can also help you to be more self-aware and conscious of who you are.

This life is a journey and the more you grow and learn, the more you will tend to be comfortable in your own skin. With and openness to who you are and the pursuit of what you are here to do, you can learn to live an authentic life. Enjoy it and feel the gratitude of such a wonderful blessing.

The authentic self is the soul made visible.
Sarah Ban Breathnach

And live now. . . And enjoy now like a child. And be your authentic self.
Jim Carrey

Feelings or emotions are the universal language and are to be honored. They are the authentic expression of who you are at your deepest place.
Judith Wright

The most authentic thing about us is our capacity to create, to overcome, to endure, to transform, to love and to be greater than our suffering.
Ben Okri