Wednesday, 26 October 2011

Authentic self

This week at my monthly appointment with my therapist we spoke about ‘authentic self’. My eyes lit up when she said those words – authentic self, how fabulous does that sound! I need to read more about it but to give a brief outline from my understanding of it, authentic self is the real you, who you are at the core of your being. The authentic self is true to your own personality despite external pressures. It is a composite of your core values, talents, skills and acquired wisdom.

The false self however is the person who is doing what he/she is expected to do, working in a job they are expected to work in and can often feel incomplete. The false self fills roles as expected by others living a life that fulfils the needs of others, ignoring your own talents and skills. The false self can cause you to cruise along in life, doing what is required at different stages. This is how most live due to the human condition.

I get this. Up until about 4 months ago (when I started my blog) I was happy working in a job that is satisfying and rewarding. I have been presented with opportunities I am extremely grateful for and could possibly work another 10 years feeling appreciative and happy. However when I started writing a bright light lit up my soul. My passion, my true authentic self was revealed. I love writing. I have wondered many times why I did not pick up a pen 20 years ago and follow that passion. But as the universe would have it I still had much to learn (still do). I would not have had the life experience or the insight as a 20 year old, and the opportunities I have had in the meantime have brought me to a place where I can now focus on my passion. My job has also taught me things I would not have been challenged with otherwise – speaking out, setting up boundaries with people, learning my own boundaries and sticking to them, how to put me first at the times I need to, how to respectfully treat others. I would possibly not have had to face these challenges had I not worked in the fields I have worked in over the past 2 decades. This makes sense to me now:

I am hitting the bookstore tomorrow to get literature on the authentic self. I am intrigued. I always thought when people said ‘you should do what you really love’ that they were lucky to be able to do so and that they must have circumstances that allowed them that freedom. What about my mortgage? What about the needs I have to fill? But it all makes sense now. Now that I have moved on from issues and challenges I had been facing in the past I have opened up a part of me, the passionate core of my being, to do what I love. By examining myself through sincere awareness I have realised that what I thought was me – my ideals, my thoughts, my beliefs – was in fact not. This is me. This is my authentic self.

Do you know much about the authentic self? If so, please share your insight.

{image source: Pinterest}


  1. I am so glad you found your authentic self Peggy because that is one inspiring blog! How do I get a copy of that quote from Steve Jobs, that is awesome.


  2. Dr Phil talks a lot about being your authentic self. I remember the first time I ever heard him say it, it was like a bell went off in my head.
    I wasn't being true to myself back then, and it was making me desperately unhappy.
    I'm glad you're on this journey, Peggy -- because it is a journey, not a destination -- and I'm looking forward to reading more about it.

  3. What a fantastic realisation for you.
    It's so interesting and saddening to think how many of us are walking around in an ill-fitting mould poured for us by society, family, expectations or self loathing.
    Myself included.
    Your self awareness is just beautiful.

  4. Oh this is just brilliant Peggy. Such a bright light projects from your posts, I can see your authentic self shining through in them. You were meant to write my friend. I also eagerly await what you have to say on this topic, as I know you've posted about it a few times and it resonates with me so wholeheartedly right now. I can put myself in your shoes completely and I like to walk around in them for a bit while I'm there :o) Well done on finding your path, it can only lead to good things now for you xo

  5. Cass isn't it brilliant? I will email you a copy of it. :)

    You have definitely helped me on my new path, in a big way. xo

  6. Oooh thanks Toni, I will have to check out some of Dr Phil's books. I like him. I read a book written by him a few years ago on family, I love his values. I read somewhere that only a small percentage of people ever really seek out their true self, aren't we lucky then! :) xo

  7. Thank you Shar. I remember as a twenty-something year old wondering 'who am I?', searching for something or someone to make me happy. If only I knew then what I know now... :)

  8. Thank you Julie, that's a compliment coming from such an inspiring writer like yourself. I can see we are coming from a very similar place in terms of spirituality and self-awareness. We can share them shoes!

    I definitely have a deep interest in self-discovery and striving to be a better person and enjoy a fulfilling life. I knew that would come out on my blog down the track. Thanks for sticking around. :) xo

  9. I would start with Dr Phil too. Anything that Oprah recommends to read, I'd read that also. I recommend Eckhart Tolle's A New Earth. Oprah has a lot of her Magazine readable online, it's a really good place to start xo

  10. Love this peggy. Have you read the Power of Now - it pretty much covers what your therapist has touched on. I have just finished it and whilst it is a bit heavy at times, it really puts things into persprective.
    You continue to inspire us Peggy. I so heart yur gorgeous outlook and the way it comes across in your writing xx

  11. Anonymous9:24 pm GMT+8

    Hello lovely xxx first time reading your blog. Oh my gosh - how proud am I of you!!!???!!! xxx My suggestion, loved her writing from the very beginning - Sarah Ban Breathnach, the Simple Abundance philosophy, and The Daybook of Comfort and Joy - a Bible for free spirits xxx see you soon my love Kieu xxx

  12. What a lovely post! It's so nice to know that your have finally found your authentic self....every mother wants that in their child and your are still mine xx

  13. Thanks Stacey, I do have A New Earth, maybe I should read it! I'll suss out some Dr Phil books. xo

    @Sonia, I also have The Power of Now, maybe I should read that too. ;)

  14. QT OH MY WORD! Is that really you? I have never been so excited about anon comments - apart from when my Mum comments as anon. :)

    I will check out your recommendations gorgeous, knowing you they'll be well worth the read. This post has been way more fruitful than my abysmal google search on books.

    Thank you, thank you, THANK YOU for dropping in. Made my day. :) See you soon sweets. xoxox

  15. Thanks Mum, you have been a huge part of my journey to where I am today. You have no idea. :) xox


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