How to Be Yourself – Become Your Authentic Self Right Now

The masks you're wearing, and how to put them down.

Over this last year and a half, we’ve all gotten used to wearing masks on our faces. And you’re probably wearing some additional masks right now that it’s time to set down and let go of, so you can live a more authentic life.

When I was in the corporate world, I felt like I had two separate lives. I was living this life in the business world, where I was climbing the corporate ladder and having a lot of success. And then I had my personal life, which was successful too, but they felt different. They felt very separate. So much so that I remember my husband Jeff would call me at work, and he would say, you sound different when you’re talking on the phone at work than at home.

The more masks that you're wearing, the more stressed out, you'll be. And at that moment, when she said that, I knew I was the person wearing lots of different masks.

I had this fear on weekends about running into co-workers at the grocery store or in the mall. It’s not like I was doing anything to be embarrassed about. It just felt like I had to keep those worlds very separate.

Fast forward to leaving that corporate career, starting my own business, doing a lot of personal development work. One day, I spoke at an event and told a very personal story. Unbeknownst to me, in that crowd that day of over 200 people, there was an attendee, somebody I had worked with for 16 years in my previous corporate career. She came up to me afterward, saying Stacey, I feel like I know you better after hearing you speak than I ever knew you in those 16 years.

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That was a real defining moment for me. I hadn’t realized the mask and protection I had put on at work. I call it the “looking good” mask. I didn’t want to let people in. I didn’t want to be vulnerable. I didn’t want to let people know what I was struggling with or afraid of. I wanted people to think that I had all the answers, I had it all figured out, which meant putting on a shield, putting on this outer shell, putting on this mask.

The thing with those kinds of masks and shields is that they do not create authentic relationships. So think about your life right now. Where are you wearing a mask? Where have you put on a shield to protect yourself or guard yourself against letting people in?

Ask yourself, is that creating the kind of results that you want in your life? Is it creating the type of relationships and connection and community that you’re desiring? Maybe it’s time to start setting down some of those masks and letting people in.

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I had a very wise woman say to me one time, she said the more masks that you’re wearing, if you’ve got your work mask, your volunteer mask, your mom or dad mask, your mask for your parents, and, and, and, and… the more stressed out you’ll be. And at that moment, when she said that, I knew I was the person wearing lots of different masks.

She said that when you learn how to be your authentic self wherever you go, recognizing that you’re one person with one life, you’ll be a lot less stressed as you can live more of that authentic self wherever you go. You’ll have a lot more joy and much deeper connections with the people in your life.

I’ll tell you today. I know that in my life as I’m living more and my authentic self. I know that I’ve created deep rich intimate relationships with the people in my life, where I’m excited to run into people when I’m out. To connect with people where it no longer feels like I’ve got to hide behind the mask of “having it all figured out.”

It’s a work in progress, but it requires us to lean in, be vulnerable, share more of who we are, how we feel, and watch our life open up as you do that.

If you’re ready to live a more authentic life, I have created a special meditation for you to help you lean into that authentic self. So make sure you download it here, listen to it every day for this next week as you’re growing into living that authentic life.

Here is to you living a life you love,

Stacey

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About Stacey

Stacey Berger

Stacey Berger

After 16 years of climbing the corporate ladder, mentoring entrepreneurs in marking, operations and finance, I made the decision in 2014 to teach success principles full time, combining my love of business and personal development.

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