How authentic can you be?

I hope you are still reading this blog… Why do I go on about transcending fears and feeling safe in spite of human vulnerability? Because authenticity is essential for positive agents. Authenticity also fuels your courage, which helps to be the change you wish to see.

Frederic Laloux labeled it “wholeness” in the reinvented, “Teal” organizations that he researched. People dis-identify from the ego – they resist the need to control, and to fit in – and strive to be themselves at work – not just the acceptable rational professional self. Is that possible in your organization?

Authentic Conversations

Robert Quinn identifies authentic conversations as a key ingredient of positive organizations – and we know this is true. We can’t trust “fake” people who posture as “the manager, the expert, or the best”.

Authenticity is expressing what you really feel and think – and it entails showing who you are. It is congruent: what’s on the inside can be observed on the outside. You walk your talk. Your actions match your words. Your words align with your nonverbal communication.

Authenticity is expressing what you really feel and think - and it entails showing who you are Click To Tweet

The latest neuroscience research shows that authenticity is good for our health, as Henna Inam shares in her book Wired for Authenticity. “This is why lie detectors work; they record stress levels that drive up perspiration and our heart rate when we lie. We’re wired for authenticity: we have stress if we’re not authentic”, she told me in an interview.
Authentic connections with others improve the health of the vagus nerve that connects our brain to our guts and regulates the immune system, plus our cardiovascular health.

We mimic behaviors and feelings

Research confirms that people recognize posturing and authenticity instantly. Authentic people invite others to open up as well because mirror neurons cause us to copy others unconsciously: we mimic behavior and feelings. When we let our guard down, it is likely that others will as well.

We’re wired for authenticity: we have stress if we’re not authentic Click To Tweet

Imagine the great impact on health if we can be authentic at work. The energy that would be unleashed when we let our guards down…

To be authentic, it is important to “know thyself”. You must connect with yourself, acknowledge what you feel, including your body wisdom, discover what you really want and who you are, what you value, and to face your fears. But you also need to be aware of your own dark side; your hypocrisy and self-deception. It is easier to see others’ faults than your own.

Important questions to ask yourself are:

How am I part of this situation?
Could I be wrong?

This is book post #43 – ME

Here‘s the earlier post
Here‘s the next post

If you’re confused – please start with post #1 or check the Positive Power overview and read the Positive Agent Manifesto.

Leaders, employees, consultants, citizens – everyone can make a positive difference from any position, without needing permission or resources from others. This blog will help you see positive possibilities and (re)claim your positive agency. Unstuck yourself and engage others via your interaction and actions. Transform into a positive organization where people and performance thrive.

I’m blogging my next book: “Positive Power at Work – How to make a positive difference from any position.” Your feedback is appreciated!

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