Monday, November 02, 2009

What, really, is authenticity?

I had the pleasure of attending the celebration of the life of Napoleon Hill in Anaheim October 24-25. This amazing event was hosted by Greg Reid and Sharon Lechter, co-authors of Three Feet From Gold, the next version of the classic Think and Grow Rich.

At this event I had the pleasure of meeting and hearing some really inspiring people including Mark Victor Hansen, Bob Proctor, T. Harv Eker, John Assaraf, John Gray, Les Brown, Darren Hardy (publisher of Success Magazine) and many others, including Greg Reid and Sharon Lechter.

I learned a lot, and met other great folks who were attending the event, and also got a lot of validation for the learning path I find myself on.

One thing that especially struck me, more as a question than an observation, was a question I've learned from Byron Katie's "The Work" and that question was: "Is it true?"

There were some speakers/presenters from whom I felt total authenticity and integrity; and others ... well, I just can't put my finger on it, but it feels as if they are operating out of scarcity and lack mentality. And that observation got me thinking about my own thinking.

How often have I gotten caught up in what I "should" do because it's what "they" think or say or do? I know I've exuded a faker or poser or impostor mentality at times where what I say and what I do are not in harmony. I think there is probably a time in all our lives when we really are "faking it to make it," especially when we're starting out in new levels of awareness.

I am learning that there are cycles even to levels of awareness and that "success" (whether that's in the traditional sense of finances and material wealth or in finally figuring out the combinations that make us truly wealthy from the inside out) can come to people at any level of awareness.

I wonder how often people are saying and doing what they think is the "right" thing when they're really not feeling that way at all. We "fake it," sometimes even from ourselves when we're inauthentic with our actions and our thinking processes. We seek approval from others to validate what we're DOING, but we don't believe them when they tell us what we think we want to hear because deep down we know we're faking it.

So do we ever really want to hear the truth? And whose truth are we seeking? Carl Jung said that “He who looks outside his own heart DREAMS, he who looks inside his own heart AWAKENS.”

This can't be an easy process; however, if we're seeking true authenticity there can be no other way to find it. There is no painless quick fix to the search for authenticity, but there is a painful quick fix: to look inside and come clean.

I believe that authenticity allows connection because when the walls are down, the feelings can be accessed. As we spend so much time in our heads, trying to analyze everything, we distance ourselves more and more from our feelings where the true connections can be made.

Sure we have to begin to think, because that is where can make conscious choices. But the way to alter the results we're getting in our lives is to look at the results, trace them back to the actions which produced them, trace the actions back to the feelings and then look at the thoughts that produced the feelings.

The end result is not to think about every little thing all the time, but to transcend the need to analyze - to get beyond thinking to allowing. This is what Eckhart Tolle was telling us in A New Earth. When we can transcend labeling and judging and even thinking in words, we can allow the access to what Napoleon Hill calls Infinite Intelligence - and what Tolle calls Presence. And, I guess, what I'm calling Authenticity.

Practice BEING today - even for a few moments. BEING goes beyond thinking. It's a state of allowing what is to just be. Notice what you notice and see how that feels. Try not to have an agenda (I understand this could be difficult - the intention is the first step).

Our authentic selves do not have to be scary. If authenticity is where connection happens, that could be a real draw to letting down the walls. Human BEINGS attract human BEINGS.

Who BE you today?


At 11:25 AM, Anonymous Jeri Hird Dutcher said...

Are you thinking of practicing authentic being as different from meditation? That's when I am at my most authentic, when it is just the silence and me, indistinguishable. There are times that I have trouble quieting my mind, or I am distracted by surroundings. Those times feel like I didn't make the connection with myself. Bringing the authentic me to my everyday conversation and interactions is what I am focusing on now. The feature article by Guy Finley, "10 Steps to Detect and Stop Secret Self-Sabotage," in your November Ticket, addressed that nicely. Thank you for a great edition. Looking forward to the next one.

At 7:18 PM, Anonymous Sarah Walder said...

I have been to a couple of conferences recently where I felt the same way about the speakers. A couple are even listed in your list. I think some speakers have been doing this so long that they are talking to an audience that is dwindling. According to Generations: The History of America's Future, we are moving from the Idealistic cycle into the Civic cycle. This means we are shifting from being phony to being real. Michael Drew ( says it is no longer about the sizzle, it's about the steak.

So, speakers who are saying things powerfully are no longer effective. I know personally I am looking for speakers who say powerful things.

I feel optimistic about the future. I have started down my own path of self-discovery and expression. I hope that more and more people jump on board! :-)

At 11:44 AM, Blogger Jodee Bock said...

Jeri & Sarah:

I can see that we are kindred spirits here! I agree, Sarah, that the sizzle is sizzling out and people are looking for the steak. Or, to use another metaphor - they're tired of looking for the pony under the pile of pony poop!

I truly believe that the world of abundance will be calling students and speakers and teachers to the world of true authenticity - warts and all - where we can learn and grow together. I will look forward to reading the Michael Drew information you reference, Sarah.

Here's to us - and let's stick together on this journey!


At 8:19 AM, Anonymous Marly said...

I agree with the importance of authenticity, but first that requires really knowing yourself. My passion is names and I encourage people to really know who they are and whether their name fits their life or not. It is not the key to being authentic, but it certainly is a great capstone to an life lived pick your own name!

At 3:30 PM, Blogger Jodee Bock said...

Cool idea, Marly! Is Marly your chosen or given name? I don't even know where I would begin if I were to pick my own name!


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