Recently, I had an incredible experience at a mini mental toughness Boot Camp in Denver that made me think about what it means to be authentic.
This is an idea that gets talked about a lot these days, but when you experience it for yourself, the difference between being disconnected and being fully, honestly engaged becomes crystal clear. We go through so much of our lives on autopilot, detached from our true feelings. In living this way, we miss a great deal about what makes life rich and rewarding. It’s time for all of us to take back the controls.
What does it mean to be Authentic?
It means not being afraid to show our real emotions, or to ask the tough questions that resonate in our bellies and lead to stronger relationships. It means showing up and being present in our own lives, every day.
In Denver, adversity appeared in the form of a major snowstorm and the question arose of whether the event would even take place, given the conditions. I’m pleased to say that out of the 23 people registered, 23 people showed up, eager to learn, eager to grow.
The participants were exceptional in their willingness to open up. They were transparent about the difficulties they face in their lives and candidly shared what was in their hearts.
- Facing financial struggles.
- Some faced the challenges of divorce and other hardships in their personal lives.
As we went through the mental toughness content and exercises designed to help them be the best they can be as they move forward in their lives, they continued to confide in and support one other. It made me think about all the opportunities we have to be authentic, to give more of ourselves.
It’s no big secret that I’m an emotional guy. I’m one of those guys who cries when I watch Extreme Home Makeovers. While in Denver, there were three different occasions when I got tears in my eyes thinking about people in my life who have had a major influence on me, the obstacles they overcame, and how we all face adversity. I was reminded that it is our response to the adversity we face, our belief in ourselves, as well as our ability to reframe the negativity and focus on solutions that allows us to move forward.
The willingness of the participants in that mental toughness boot camp to be authentic during our time together on a snowy Denver day, made all the difference in the value of the experience for everyone involved.
Choose to be authentic
It’s your authentic behavior, your ability to show emotion, and your willingness to let people know what you’re going through that will lead you to the solutions that inevitably make a difference for you and those around you.
Be yourself as you write your story. Go Do Great Things!