To me, there's nothing more important than being authentic, but what does it take?
- The desire to be real.
- The decision to be real.
- Saying what's so.
- Handling the outcome.
In case of confrontation, both the confronter and confrontee will be uncomfortable, but if the desire is strong to be who you really are, you'll hang in because to do otherwise would be too painful. It even says somewhere in the Bible that "the truth will set you free."
Despite what my friends or clients might think, I don't like confrontation. However, the reason I'm willing to participate in it is that not being authentic - not telling the truth as it arises - feels awful. It hurts much more to experience the cloud of deceit when I remain quiet and there's phoniness in the air.
So the first step in being authentic is the desire to be real. You have to want to participate in life at such a high level of desire that anything less would be unacceptable.
The second step is to make the decision to be real. This means that while you might have the desire to be real , you might be too afraid of people not liking you or afraid to stand out from the crowd to actually make a decision to be authentic no matter what!
The third step is to say what's so. This means that you may have the desire to be authentic and even make a decision to be so but are you willing to speak your truth? This takes guts. You might be fearful and uncomfortable but to continue to let opportunities go by that cry out for truth will only hurt you deep at the soul level.
And the fourth step, to handle the outcome - whatever it might be - for standing up and telling your truth. From my point of view, you'll never go wrong by holding "truth" and "authenticity" as an ideal - even if your attempts to do so might not always succeed.