When people ask me why their performance is suffering, I almost always find the missing piece is their authenticity.
So what happens and why do we get so stuck? It’s more about the emotional parts of who we are than the intellectual component. I think it’s almost always related to the fear of being judged, the fear of failing, making mistakes, and sometimes even the fear of succeeding.
It seems like the common theme boils down to the fear of our own vulnerability – the fear of revealing our weakness. This is why it takes much introspection, insight, and learning to effectively manage our fear so that we can become more authentic in all of the roles we perform.
I usually suggest that people take a closer look and do some “real” self-examining. In each of the roles that you’re performing – ask yourself, are your goals, values, beliefs and interests REALLY aligned with who you are? Is your inner voice positive, forgiving, and compassionate? Remember, your inner voice is the product of past experiences and layers of messages throughout your life. Pay attention to that voice and figure out how much of what you hear is really coming from YOU.
To add to the complexity, you’re also going to be projecting your own beliefs onto others. Once you’ve assigned all of these self-beliefs to your audience, your staff, your spouse, your kids, and your boss, you’ve just created your own subjective reality. But is it real and how does this help you (or not)? Do you live a life positioning yourself to be on the defense as you look for safety and protection? How does this help you to connect with others and with that authentic part of you?
Understand what scares you and learn how to work with it. It IS through those moments of fear and struggle that you can find your greatest discoveries in authenticity. The more authentic, the more powerful and effective you’ll be in your performance. Let’s remember that “performance” is not just when you’re in the spotlight – it’s all that you bring to your roles in everyday life at work and at home.
Challenges are opportunities that lead to authentic growth and change IF you choose to utilize these to live a healthier, happier, more productive authentic life.
Written by RLA Associate and radio personality Teri Sica. You can contact Teri at: firstname.lastname@example.org or tune in to her show on Saturday mornings at 10:30 on 95.9 WATD-FM.