Why You Should Live An Authentic Life- And How To Do It
Don’t Deny Your Life
Living a life of authenticity in a world that often hides reality behind a facade of illusions is not an easy task.
However, the concept itself is fairly simple.
It’s simple because all we have to do is pay attention to what makes us feel good about ourselves and the world around us.
To do that we must find a way to see our true selves and not the distorted image that society tries to make us see.
It’s not easy because we are constantly being bombarded by advertisements in newspapers, magazines, TV, and radio that promise if we only look like this, eat that, take this, and exercise like that, we will be happy and life will be good.
We are told how we should feel and how we should act.
Sometimes, in the quest for acceptance and love, we bend and contort ourselves into the image we think that others would want.
But in trying to please others, we only bring about feelings of emptiness and even more discontent.
What we truly need to do is drop all the expectations and live a life that resonates with our values.
Becoming a vegetarian because of our compassion for the plight of factory farm animals is one good example of living what we believe to be true.
SEE ALSO: 5 Dating Tips From Buddha
The Magic of the Moment
Have you ever noticed the difference in how we dance when we are alone?
You know, the way we sway and move for no other reason than to express how we feel while listening to the music.
The feeling of just flowing with the sounds with no motive other than to just be one with the music.
No one to please, impress or entice, no reason to look or be a certain way.
That is authenticity.
To feel the simple joy of expression in doing things because we love how we feel when we do them, that is being authentic.
This sounds so simple.
Yet many have lived their lives having never known the magic of this feeling.
When what we say and do echos what we feel deeply inside, a psychological and spiritual reaction occurs; an alchemy of sorts.
Life feels more intense, more real.
Our emotions tend to balance more easily and we find that we feel happier, love more, and have more compassion for ourselves and others.
Life seems to have more depth and meaning.
Learning Your Motivations
By living authentically we come close to recapturing that childlike innocence we were born with.
We can find our way back to a place where our hearts and minds are open just as they were before we were taught limited beliefs and judgments.
With the mindfulness gained from meditation, we learn to be conscious of the motivations behind the things we do.
We learn to take a step back and sense the spaciousness we are allowed between the moments of life.
That is where the magic happens.
In that spaciousness between the moments of thought and action, we have the chance to choose whether we will simply react as we usually do, as we’re expected to do, as the crowd does, or whether we will choose to follow that small, quiet voice of authenticity that says—do this instead!
There is no better way to find that voice than through a regular practice of meditation.
By calming the constant chatter that we all have inside our minds, we are able to step back somewhat and observe our thoughts and emotions.
With practice, we can learn to let them come and go, much like clouds floating by on a beautiful summer day. The sun (our authentic self) can be hidden for a short time behind the clouds, but it is always there, ready to shine brightly once the clouds have passed on by.
Here are some helpful things to remember if you are new to meditation or if you are coming back after a long break:
- Prepare a space where you will be comfortable and can remain uninterrupted for the duration of your meditation.
Wear comfortable clothing. Some people like to wear a special robe or article of clothing. It could be a scarf, a light robe, or maybe a certain piece of jewelry or mala.
- Use a timer. This is helpful whether you are a beginner or advanced. You can use a timer especially for meditation or there are many apps available for your tablet, laptop or computer. If you are going to be using your cell phone, please make sure that your calls are muted so as not to disturb you during your practice.
- Be patient with yourself. We all have days when things seem more difficult than others. This is true of meditation as well. There will be days when our mind is calm and it’s easier to meditate. There will also be days when we are constantly coming back to our breath, the sound of the bell, or just labeling our thoughts as “thinking”. Compassion and patience are the keys to any successful meditation practice.
It’s through regular sitting and meditation that we can come to know our true selves.
It’s in this silence that we can learn to recognize that still voice that resides within us all.
As with most things in life, with a little patience, time, and effort, we will soon be living the life we have always wanted to live.
A life full of joy, peace, and true authenticity.
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