Let’s Get Real: Authenticity At Work

by Starla J. King on June 16, 2011

Authenticity used to scare the pididdle out of me (it tends to do that to a closeted lesbian).

And now, 20-some years and a whole lot of uncloaking later, authenticity is the safest and most powerful place I know.

Authenticity is the place where you no longer have to pretend, or tie yourself up in knots to please everyone else, or snuff out the bright flame of your own talents/skills/gifts.

Authenticity is the outward representation of the genius core of you…so why wouldn’t you want to bring it to work??

Oh yes, it is scaa-a-aaaaaaa-ry to bring your heart to work. It could get squished.

And oh yes, it is gut-squirming to bring the real you to work and share your real ideas and step out with your own unique way of being and doing and believing.

But if you really really want to do your best work and experience your most amazing self, authenticity needs to lead the way.

Why? I’ll let Steven Pressfield answer that, in this excerpt from his brilliant book,the War of Art :

“When the hack sits down to work, he doesn’t ask himself what’s in his own heart. He asks what the market is looking for.

The hack condescends to his audience. He thinks he’s superior to them. The truth is, he’s scared to death of them or, more accurately, scared of being authentic in front of then, scared of writing what he really feels or believes, what he himself thinks is interesting. He’s afraid it won’t sell. So he tries to anticipate what the market wants, then gives it to them.

It can pay off, being a hack… a slick dude can make millions being a hack. But even if you succeed, you lose, because you’ve sold out your Muse, and your Muse is you, the best part of yourself, where your finest and only true work comes from.”

Authenticity is the voice of our muse.  

(And yes, we ALL have a muse).  When we let her speak, we — and those around us — finally get a chance to experience that “best part” of ourselves, where our “finest and only true work comes from.”  

And when we let her speak, the market will listen

So give your work (whatever it is) a chance to change someone… give your work your authenticity.  

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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Rebecca P. Cohen August 8, 2011 at 9:46 pm

Authenticity is the outward representation of the genius core of you…

Pure genius!

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Starla J. King August 11, 2011 at 7:59 am

Ah, Rebecca, thank you for pulling that quote out… it’s a perfect reminder for ME! xo

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