To live authentically, one has to really question and understand who they really are, in every aspect of living. Spiritually, of course, we are all children of the Most High—this is our authentic Self! But sometimes we get stuck living in patterns that seem to trap us like quicksand, and we lose our ‘self’ in the roles we are in: mother, teacher, wife, daughter… And in the beliefs we have adopted: I am wealthy, successful, poor, uneducated… We can turn within to that silent place and explore, looking deeply into our attitudes, roles, and beliefs, questioning where they come from and do they still ring true? Are they outdated patterns, ideas, and thought-forms from childhood or early adulthood, from a divorce, or from being fired from a job? Are our current beliefs serving our highest and best good—our authentic Self? We must be willing to let go of limiting beliefs—even when we don’t yet have the perfect replacement for them!
What are our core values—those things in which we believe so passionately that we look forward to practicing and expressing them in every aspect of our lives? Core values like Joy, Creativity, Love, and Personal Growth… We then must have the courage to live in integrity with our values. We must find a way so that our thoughts, feelings, and actions align so that we are in integrity with our true Self.
We can turn within and take a good look at our needs, wants, and desires—do they align with our core values, and our true nature? Have they changed? Can we let some go and should we acquire new wants or desires? When we acquire things out of alignment with our true nature, our highest good, it is a shallow victory. The pleasure from that thing, situation or relationship fades rather quickly. But when we are in alignment and in synchronicity with our authentic Self, we attract circumstances that support us on our journey. When in alignment, the things, situations and events that we attract into our lives uplift and support us, and bring with them peace, joy, and a lasting fulfillment.
We need to scrutinize our support systems—are they serving us? Do the people around us allow us to feel good about expressing our authentic Self? Or do we often hide our light under a bushel, not wanting negative attention or criticism? Sometimes we might even find ourselves adapting to someone else’s core values to fit in—say, at work or when in a new relationship. Are those around us encouraging us to reveal more of who we are, or are they asking us to stay put and uphold the status quo?
We need to turn within and ask some hard questions: are we using all of our God-given gifts and talents? Or have we been stuck ‘getting by’ or just ‘making money’ for so long that we’ve forgotten all about our passions? Maybe there are new passions and talents that have emerged that are just waiting to be expressed. We can let go of fear, of any idea that it’s too late, or that we don’t have enough time—we can jump into our passion at anytime with the courage to live free. It’s always the right time to live our life from passion!
We turn within and explore: What excites us, impassions us, uplifts us? Sometimes we use excuses not to be excited or live impassioned: I don’t have the money, time, education, or resources… If our passion is traveling and exploring new countries, but we don’t have the finances or vacation time to get on a plane this minute—we can find other ways to live our passion: go to a museum, read books, watch movies, or take online or in-person cooking classes about the people and places that excite you. This creates a path of possibility and satisfies our soul’s yearning.
We can find meaning, peace, and joy in the simple things in life. We can usually find our authentic self away from the crowds and in nature—walks on the beach or through the park, even meditating on a flower, a leaf, or a candle. Find the quiet places to really explore who you are now, and what will support you in living authentically.
It can take some deep self-inquiry to know which type of eggs are our favorite (see the movie Runaway Bride), which music now makes us cringe, and where we find our ultimate peace—but the rewards of living an authentic life are enormous. Freedom is our gift—it has already been given. To fully accept a fearless and authentic life, we must simply live our passion, always!
– Elizabeth Cantey