“Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life.”
Today marks the first Monday in April. Upon waking up this morning I was excited for the sun to come up, the birds to begin chirping and to start the day on the right foot. Unfortunately, the sun was nowhere to be found, I heard no birds and saw dark clouds cover as far as my eyes could see. I didn’t anticipate that my morning would start in this manner.
After seeing the dark clouds, I was disappointed and wanted to crawl back into bed. I knew that this was not the best way to start my Monday but the gloomy weather sucked away all of my good vibes. Instead of moving forward with what was going to be a fantastic day, I jumped back into the bed and scrolled through my phone. To my surprise, I saw tweets and messages on Facebook of everyone dreading the reality of having to start their week. I knew that I wasn’t the only one that was having a crummy morning and I wanted to do something about it.
To cope with the day, I found all these hilarious videos on my phone that I have saved over the years. These videos were clips of my friends and me being silly. Some of them were recorded at bars, in the dorm rooms or at our favorite hangout spots. After watching these videos, I noticed how raw and candid they were. Each and every one of them consisted of myself or my friends being unapologetically authentic. Each clip was unplanned, natural and captivating. After watching each video and laughing loud enough for my neighbors to hear, I understood the importance of authenticity. I pondered on how important it is to choose to be the truest and most vulnerable versions of ourselves possible. I know this idea may be hard to grasp, so here are three reasons why you should practice authenticity.
1. Being Fake Takes A Lot of Energy
It takes a lot of energy to pretend to be someone you aren’t. Think about actors. When they act, they have to rehearse, disregard themselves and completely take on the identity of another person. It truly is a skill to be an actor or actress, that’s why Viola Davis gets all of those awards for her impeccable work. Acting is a skill. Imagine how hard it is for people to be themselves that they have to create personas and be cautious of every move they make? By not being your authentic self you have to act and work hard to be someone you aren’t. This behavior takes a lot of time and energy. Being your true authentic self, you can simply be. You don’t have to expend energy pretending to be someone you aren’t.
2. People Will Love You For It
There’s an interesting paradox in our culture that many individuals don’t understand. We as humans naturally desire authenticity. No one wants or likes a fake. Some may not have language for it or how to articulate that but, any time there is incongruence in a person’s character or behavior problems arise. When you are your most authentic self, people will love you for it. Individuals all over the world love Kevin Hart for his raw comedy. If Kevin Hart were pretending to be someone he wasn’t, I’m certain he wouldn’t be the successful comedian he is today.
3. You’re Going To Die
Yep, you read that header right. You are going to die and let’s face it, we all are. That is the one common experience that every single one of us share is our mortality. The only thing worse about knowing that we are going to die, is that we don’t know when it will be. Some die old, while others die young. The fact that every day is a gift should behoove you to want to be yourself. We each only get one life. That’s it. No do-overs, no second chances. All we get is this one life. We never know when this life will end, so it’s important for each us to live it up the best we can. One way to do this is by living in truth and being the most authentic beings we can be.
Who we are is usually not stagnate. We change, life changes and inevitably our “truth” changes. The goal of each day is to present and express the fullest form of reality possible. The Snapchat videos that I uploaded today were expressions of raw authenticity. They were funny, heartfelt and from the looks of my inbox, well received. I intend to create more videos and moments that are authentic and genuine. I hope that you choose to do the same.