The idea of being authentic came up for me today after I re-discovered some videos I had watched probably 7 or 8 years ago:
It’s a tough question to ask yourself:
Are you living your genuine life or just playing a role?
Rather than me giving a summary of such a short video, please take a few minutes just to watch.
Here’s a little pop-quiz:
See if you notice anything toward the end of the video.
It will be quite obvious when you notice.
And please have a watch and listen before reading any of the comments under the video. Then you will most likely agree…
There was a huge missed opportunity.
The question in the title of the video slipped through the cracks of the universe, sucked up by an infinite vacuum never to return.
Okay, maybe I’m being dramatic. I still love Oprah, by the way!
I’ll let you watch and decide for yourself.
That aside, the point that stuck with me was when you are actually living life, and not just giving into a superficial role, your behavior doesn’t change too much.
It reminds me of when I hear people recommending to just tell the truth – then you don’t have to try to keep track and remember all the lies you’ve spouted.
Seth Godin calls this being consistent in action, not “being authentic”:
And here is one more take which comes somewhat from left-field.
The seers of Ancient Mexico termed all of this folly. They said we either act with controlled or uncontrolled folly.
The only control to maintain, they said, is that a warrior knows they are playing a role:
“A warrior must know first that his acts are useless, and yet, he must proceed as if he didn’t know it. That’s a shaman’s ‘controlled folly.'”