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The Importance of Authenticity

Throughout ancient wisdom and philosophies around the world, the message of living with authenticity has continued to be unwaveringly present.  Ancient Greek philosophers stressed the importance of authenticity as a physical state and way of being in control of one’s own life.  A few thousand years ago, the aphorism “Know Thyself” was one of the truths inscribed in the forecourt of the Temple of Apollo at Delphi.

Today, we’ve repeatedly heard the cliché “just be yourself”.  We are often given this simple piece of advice when we’re asked to show up for something that’s important to us, where we are unsure of ourselves and more likely to act out of character to try to feel more worthy.

Interestingly, the more meaningful and important something is to us, the more likely we’ll try to procrastinate and avoid doing the very actions that will bring us success.  Underlying this is a fear.  A fear that moves us away from our authenticity.

This tendency to move away from our authenticity might not seem like much initially, but what happens when we fear being true to ourselves throughout our lives?

Bronnie Ware, a nurse in Australia, spent several years looking after patients in the last 12 weeks of their lives.  In her book, The Top Five Regrets of the Dying, Ware wrote about the amazing clarity of vision that people have at the end of their lives, and how we can learn from their wisdom.  Bronnie Ware found that the most common regret of all was this:

“I wish I’d had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me.”

So how is this all relevant to coaching?  Coaching can be seen fundamentally as a process of connecting to what is authentic to us.  Additionally, when a coach is authentic and in the present moment, they can move the coaching conversation to go deeper more quickly because the client has trust in the coach.

Coaching can be a tool to help us realise our truth, understand who we are and who we want to become in our lives.  Just as there are many forms of coaching, there are also many situations in which someone may seek coaching.  Here are just a few:

  • To help gain more clarity, direction, and purpose
  • To help understand and reach their true potential
  • To stay motivated and accountable to certain actions
  • To help stay focussed on what’s important
  • To help increase a general feeling of wellbeing and happiness

About Aneesh Alidina

Aneesh is a Coach, Explorer and Creator.
Aneesh creates content on various topics including Deep Coaching, Business, and True Productivity.