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Don’t look at what people say, but how they say it and what they do!
Authenticity is highly valued: On the whole, we don’t like or trust people who come across as phony and false. Not surprisingly, we avoid such people. We seek friends and colleagues who are authentic. Can any politician be authentic?
Authenticity is important, but what exactly do we mean by the term?
If you want to understand the true meaning of authenticity you need to go back to its root. The Latin root of the word “authenticity” is “author”, so being “authentic” it’s about being the “author” of your life. Authenticity is an active, dynamic and powerful creative process. It’s not about revealing something, it’s about building something; and that something is “YOU”.
Often, we judge a person’s authenticity by the passion and commitment they have for what they say and do. Part of being authentic is standing up for what you believe in and speaking the truth as it seems to you, even if it is not what others want to hear.
However, the question is, authentic to what?
People can be committed to and passionate about lots of things, but this by itself is not enough. Authenticity is more than when someone believes in what they say or acts in a way that is consistent with their beliefs.
An inauthentic person is equally able to stand up and say what they truly believe or what the want us to believe so they can manipulate us. We ought not to judge authenticity purely by the passion a person has for what they say. The more important part of the authenticity question is to look at the character of the person. What’s behind what they say? Do they walk the walk. Do the have a history of keeping their word?
President John Kennedy had the ability to activate people by asking what they could do for the nation. Mother Theresa inspired us all, by giving nourishment to the hearts all people. Martin Luther King Jr. words added a new magnitude to the way a society looks at itself. Greta Thornberg has inspired a generation of young people to stand up and fight for what they believe in.
These leaders and others have something in common. They had the ability to move people to greater achievements, to appeal to the highest motives in the individual and to help everyone feel involved. Their leadership skills are relevant to all of us, which are in roles where success depends on the ability to influence and motivate others because of ‘who’ they were.
Always Show Up – Be You – Geoffrey
Author | Certified Coach | Corporate Trainer | Speaker