Even with all the self-knowledge you can possibly have, it is still possible that you do not act accordingly. You can become distracted by your wishes for how you WANT to be versus who you really are. You can feel a conflict between your own values and those of society. And, guess what? You also change over time, so you must get to know yourself often, especially when you are starting to feel conflict inside.
So, while self-knowledge is the first step, learning to live by what you know about yourself is the second part. It requires setting the right goals for yourself, then regularly reflecting on your life to ensure that these goals are still in line with who you genuinely are, deep down. Here are some other essential rules you must learn if you want to be true to yourself and live your life genuinely.
Decide You Want to be Happy and Authentic
The first rule of living the most genuine version of your life possible is to decide that you want to be happy being yourself. Keeping your heart and mind open to the opportunities that will make you happy is essential. When you make the conscious choice to choose happiness and genuine living, you are more likely to accept these experiences when they come as well as stick to your guns when you feel the pressure of others’ values creeping in on your life.
Becoming committed to authenticity means that you will make choices based on your self-knowledge. You must actively choose to be yourself consistently, which requires a persistent evaluation of what you are doing in your life. These things can be hard to sustain, which is why you have to make a choice and remain committed if you want the most genuine life possible for yourself.
You Don’t Need Approval
It does not matter if other people approve of or respect your choices. The only person you need to worry about disappointing is yourself. When you stop seeking approval or validation for your life from other people, you can finally make decisions based on the one person that really matters- you.
When you gain self-knowledge, it can be a little scary, because you must look deep inside yourself and face some of the uncomfortable truths about yourself. But, getting comfortable with even those darkest parts of yourself is the only way to learn to accept and love yourself.
Seeking approval from others will only leave you feeling unfulfilled and alone. You will not become happy because of the right partner, the right job, a bigger paycheck, or a new house. Even if you get all those things, you will still be the same person you always have been on the inside. Learning to live with and love yourself is the only true path to happiness.
Becoming Genuinely Yourself
Learning more about yourself and then actively expressing who you are and what you want in life is the path toward becoming more genuine with yourself and well as others. If you are ready to let your real self shine through, then you will need to focus on two types of work.
The first is increasing your self-knowledge, and the second is allowing that knowledge to guide you in your life. Below, we have highlighted a wide range of strategies that help you to carry out both of these goals.
Identify Your Core Values
The morals and principles that guide your life are extremely important to living as your genuine self. Getting to know what is important to you is a crucial step in learning to listen with authenticity. First, make a list of all the values you believe to be important in your life. After you have this large list, create a second that includes just the top eight most important.
These are likely the ones guiding your daily decisions. Finally, narrow that list down further into your top three. These are the values that guide your long-term goals and dreams. Now, what does this tell you about yourself? In what areas of your life are you living according to these values? And in what areas do you see some room for realignment?
Admit your Truth
If you can’t be honest with yourself, you can’t be honest and genuine with anyone else in your life. Speaking aloud or writing down your true feelings, expressing your true purpose or wishes in life is essential for learning to become more genuine. If you can’t say these things to others quite yet, you should at least be able to say them to yourself.
Admit to yourself your darkest fears, your wildest dreams, your true inner grief. Unburden yourself of the shame, hate, or negative feelings that are holding you back from living the life you have always wanted. It takes a lot of soul searching, but this activity can release you from years of being someone you are not, freeing you to live the life you have always wanted to live.
When you try to be yourself to others, it can feel very vulnerable, particularly when you are first beginning to embrace authenticity. Have courage knowing that you are becoming more genuine in order for others to better know and understand you and because it is what you deserve in life.
Learning to be yourself takes practice, and the more you do it, the easier it becomes. Learning to be bold and proud of yourself will come over t when you take steps every day to stop hiding your genuine self and instead reveal the true you to the world.