Or at Least Authenticity is not JUST Speaking from the Heart…
If you paid any attention at all to the 2016 US election, chances are you heard the work “authenticity” come up regarding the two final candidates. Trump was anointed as authentic, while Clinton was scorned as too measured and calculating. But neither was very good at speaking from the heart.
At the time I was an Authenticity Trainer, and heart-centered people told me again and again that they wanted nothing to with authenticity if Trump’s scathing, off the cuff brand of authenticity was the model.
So, if this is you, take a big deep breath.
Saying that all authenticity is heart-centered is like saying that all words impart wisdom.
Obviously, they don’t.
Authenticity is NOT Speaking from the Heart
So if authenticity is NOT speaking from the heart, then what is it? In a broad view, authenticity is simply communicating without self-editing and other filters. They key to effective authenticity that adds value and wisdom to a situation, builds relationships and connects you with your deep self, is to be communicating authentically from your heart center.
But that’s not the only aspect of yourself that you can communicate “authentically” from.
There are three basic areas that you can speak authentically from:
Head: The head is the realm of learned information and stored patterns based on that information. The conscious mind is the realm of learned logic and ideas and makes up about 10% of the brain. The subconscious mind makes up 90% of the brain and stores your hidden patterns, most based on fear (just the way the brain encodes things, nothing personal. This applies to me, too.)
The head is also where we cultivate ideas and sometimes you need to speak deliberately in order to lay out a complex thought or plan in a way that others understand. This kind of deliberation is aligned with authenticity when you are communicating honestly and openly.
Gut: Gut instinct is often confused with intuition, but it is not. Gut instinct is also learned. It combines personal learning and experience, as well as what you absorb from your family, ancestors and society. It’s a deep emotional alliance that is often unconscious and can feel authentically true in an emotionally forceful or even reactive way.Gut instinct is tied to the survival impulse, including emotional, financial and other forms of survival. At its best, gut instinct helps you connect with what is emotionally true for you (though not objectively “true”), access generation skills like farming, and bond with others. At it worst, gut reaction can generate “Us vs. Them” feelings, reactive thinking and divisiveness.
When gut instinct is tempered with the compassion and connection of the heart, the two working in harmony can bridge the often gaping chasm between personal emotional truth and the self/other compassion that supports true connection.
Heart: Science has demonstrated that there is a field of subtle energy that connects everything, and the heart is the organ that interacts with this field. Yes, it sounds woo woo, but the science is sound and has been for a while. When you tap into this field and stay centered in heart-centered states like compassion, love and appreciation, you can deeply connect with your whole self as well as with others.
Heart-centered authenticity unites you with your whole being, and brings to the moment your truest unconditioned and magnanimous self.
True Authenticity is Speaking from the Heart
What I think of as true authenticity is heart-centered authenticity. When you speak from the mind it often comes across as distant (except to other “head” people.) When you speak from gut emotion, it feels very real and raw in the moment, but is an overlay of poignant past pain over the reality of the present moment, and can inflame rather than improves a situation.
True authenticity, to me, is being in a heart-centered state and communicating to the best of my ability from there, even as I experience mind thoughts, gut reactions and emotional pain. Being heart-centered isn’t an escape from other inputs or emotions, it is the ability to experience those even as you stay in the state of presence and compassion.
Your heart-centered self encompasses all of you and all of life. It is the most open and transparent way of living I have ever experienced, being totally connected to all that is and to all of you, even the down and dirty that you may try to hide.
How do YOU define authenticity?
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