On the importance of being authentic
September 22, 2019
I think that authenticity has become one of the scarcest resources. There’s so little of it out there nowadays. So many of us put up a front of how we would like to be seen not how we actually are.
The truth is, people are also really good at seeing through these fronts. We have developed extremely good bullshit detectors. As a result, we’ve become very skeptical of everything.
E.g., when someone would give us a gift without asking anything in return and not on Christmas, most of us would think there’s some kind of a catch - we would be on our guard. “what is she up to?” we would ask ourselves.
Maybe it shouldn’t be like this, but it is - and for a good reason. There’s just so much faking out there. Many people think they can’t possibly be authentic and reveal their true selves - nobody would ever like their true self. At least that’s what we might think.
It’s the opposite. Nobody likes fake fronts. And since people detect fake fronts quite fast, you’re disliked quite fast - or at least you become unrelatable.
Sure, being authentic is a risky business. We put ourselves out there. We reveal ourselves, which means we’re vulnerable to attacks or rejection.
But which is better: being liked by someone not because of you but because of your fake front, or being liked by the real you.
The problem with the front is that it needs to be constantly maintained. It takes a lot of energy not to let that mask slip. You have to constantly filter everything you say and do and analyze whether it matches up with the front. Besides, if others see the real you, they probably don’t relate to you anymore - they related to your front in the first place.