Menu Close

Are You Yourself or Someone Else? Authenticity VS Approval-Seeking – 2 Keys

meaning of authentic, vulnerability, leo buscaglia, conformity, existentialism, leadership, authenticity in relationships & business,

In this week’s Success Newsletter, I would like to reveal what it means to be authentic and the 2 keys to being authentic.

First a quick update:  

The Breakup Test

Are you heartbroken, angry, lost, lonely, confused, depressed, or pining over your ex? How would you like to benefit from personalized advice, action steps and revelations? Take my free breakup test and get your own personalized report.

What Really Matters To You?

At the end of your life, what will you regret? Will you regret what you did or what you didn’t do? Will you regret not having had or owned something or perhaps regret not being someone else? Watch the video where I predict your one regret.

Now, let’s talk about what it means to be authentic and the 2 keys to being authentic.

Who are you in your relationships – personal, romantic, and professional?

Are you yourself or someone else?

Are you the person you want to be or are you driven by the desire to get others’ approval, acceptance, validation or to be included, and therefore, you deny or hide who you are and what you feel, and instead become who you think they want you to be?

Authenticity is the full expression of your thoughts, emotions, desires, and values, despite the pressure by others to conform to their expectations of you.

“We need not be afraid to touch, to feel, to show emotion. The easiest thing in the world is to be what you are, what you feel. The hardest thing to be is what other people want you to be.” – Leo Buscaglia

It is also critical to accept that you will perhaps not always be authentic in every moment and with everybody in your life. First, we are human and second, sometimes, we adjust our behavior because we need something or are desperate and believe that we must change to get what we want from that person, business, or company. I am not referring here to adapting behavior and approaches to life as one grows or evolves; nor am I referring to adapting your behavior based on the demands of the moment or situation. Rather, I am referring to calculated strategies designed to achieve a specific goal. However, even here, one can argue that one is being true to oneself, if that self is someone who does whatever is necessary to get what he/she wants!

The key to understanding authenticity and thus being authentic is realizing that authenticity does not involve or imply that you are kind, sweet, caring, compassionate, warm, secure, or confident. Being authentic simply means that you reveal who you are – what you think and feel along with behavior that is congruent with your values. You might have poor values and poor character; you might just be really angry and bitter or overwhelmed by emotion in the moment!

This is vulnerability. Being vulnerable also leads to authenticity – to authentic expression which, in turn, results in an ineffable sense of liberation!

Blocks to authenticity

Fakeness or inauthenticity is driven by the fear of being rejected. We all ultimately seek connection and belonging; we want to be included and we want approval, acceptance and validation.

The question is: What does it mean to you if they accept you, but they are accepting a fake image that you have created?

What does it mean to you if he/she loves or accepts you, but their love is for someone who doesn’t actually exist?

Rejection is painful but being ‘loved’ or ‘welcomed’ for someone you are not is more painful because you will never feel fulfilled, you will never experience deep connection, and you will be exhausted from constantly being hypervigilant, fearful of rejection and desperately trying hold onto their approval.

“The person who risks nothing, does nothing, has nothing, is nothing, and becomes nothing. He may avoid suffering and sorrow, but he simply cannot learn, feel, change, grow or love. Chained by his certitude, he is a slave; he has forfeited his freedom. Only the person who risks is truly free.” – Leo Buscaglia

2 Keys to being authentic

There are only 2 keys to being authentic – knowing who you are, and removing the one block to expressing who you are.

1. Know thyself: You cannot be true to yourself if you do not know yourself.

Identify and list your:

Personality traits and character



Issues (insecurities, blocks, fears)

Dreams and goals

2. Accept thyself – overcome fear of rejection to express yourself

Fear of rejection prevents you from expressing yourself. Connected to the fear of rejection is behavior driven by a need for validation, belonging, acceptance or approval.

Identify the image you have created for others – the way you believe you want others to see you. What are you hiding? Which part of you do you believe they will reject? In what way have relationships failed in your life because you never spoke up, because you never expressed what you wanted, needed, or felt? In what way have relationships failed because you were a people-pleaser or you were fake and afraid to connect deeply, be vulnerable and fully reveal yourself?

Remember, when you are being something you are not, you are actually rejecting the real you, the authentic you.

The more you place your self-worth and self-acceptance outside of you on other people, the weaker you become, the more you betray yourself. Eventually you arrive at the point of not even knowing who you really are because you are constantly changing for everybody else.

“Man’s basic psychological needs are these. He requires to be seen, recognized, appreciated, heard, fondled, sexually satisfied. He must be allowed the freedom to choose his own ways, to grow at his own rate and to make his own mistakes, to learn. He needs to accept himself and other human beings and be accepted by them. He desires to be an “I” as well as a “we”. He strives to grow into the unique individual he is.” – Leo Buscaglia

Author and speaker, Leo Buscaglia also known as “Dr. Love”, focused on the power of love; love begins with you, and self-acceptance is self-love. Focus on self-acceptance which leads to authenticity, to free expression. If you would like help to overcome the fear of rejection and to thus accept yourself and be authentic in all of your relationships, book a one-on-one session with me.

You can add to the conversation below.

I wish you the best and remind you “Believe in yourself -You deserve the best!”

Patrick Wanis Ph.D.

Celebrity Life Coach, Human Behavior & Relationship Expert & SRTT Therapist

meaning of authentic, vulnerability, leo buscaglia, conformity, existentialism, leadership, authenticity in relationships & business,
Are You Yourself or Someone Else? Authenticity VS Approval-Seeking
Facebook Comments