I can only answer for myself, of course, but I experience meaning when I'm totally honest and transparent.
I'm honest and transparent with:
- my son, Jay, about his future and mine
- my girlfriend, Karen, about what I'm feeling and thinking
- my boss, Kevin, about what I'm uncomfortable with and where I think we can improve
- myself, about what's important in the very brief life I'm living
For me, honesty and transparency are the cues that signal whether or not a person is used to being authentic. Being authentic—that reflection of our truest self without any pretending—is a mode of behavior that we are hopefully encouraged to observe in our upbringing by responsible adults who are, in fact, themselves authentic.
When I think of ways I can be authentic, in addition to examples of honesty and transparency above, I think of the following:
- I can write posts to this blog that are a reflection of my experience rather than a preachy exhortation
- I can make smart choices regarding my nutrition, finances, and relationships
- I can answer questions posed to me with honesty and transparency
- I can speak only when I have something valid to communicate
- I can hold a view that is open to that of others instead of blocking those opinions with which I disagree
- I can hold an honest and transparent intention in all my communication
- I can initiate actions that reflect such intentions
- I can make my livelihood in a manner that doesn't bring harm to anyone
- I can incorporate mindful mode of listening when interacting with others
- I can undergird and support all that I do with a regular practice of meditation
What can you do to become more authentic?