When was the last time …
You were the first person on the dance floor and shook it like you didn’t care who was watching?
You stood up for what you believed in, even if it was the unpopular opinion in the room?
You did something that everyone else told you not to do … just because it felt right to you?
It’s hard to let go of what other people think of us.
But if we let other people’s ideas of who we should be prevent us from truly being who we are, we’ll always feel a little lost, unfulfilled and maybe even depressed.
If you’ve known me for a while, you know that my long-standing motto is “Stay true.” But this past year, there were times when I found myself apologizing for who I am and trying to make everyone else happy. It didn’t work—it’s impossible to make everyone else happy—and it just made me feel frustrated and adrift.
I realized that I had to stop listening to what other people thought and move forward with my life the way that I wanted to.
I had to follow my own inner voice and be myself no matter what. And I had to vow to never apologize for being who I am.
I had to be unapologetically authentic.
As Keala Settle sings in “This is Me”, the anthem from “The Greatest Showman”:
Look out ’cause here I come
And I’m marching on to the beat I drum
I’m not scared to be seen
I make no apologies, this is me
When I look around, I notice that this is something we’re all striving for these days. It’s empowering to let go of trying to be perfect and instead be exactly who we are, no matter what anyone else thinks.
There’s a reason why theatres are still hosting sing-a-long showings of the “The Greatest Showman” over a year after it premiered. We all want to be unapologetically authentic. We’re all ready to be seen, scars and all.
Perhaps even more moving than the film itself is a video of the first time Keala Settle sang the song for the movie’s cast and crew. She wanted to hide … literally! She would not come out from behind the music stand.
The film’s director, Michael Gracey, told her it was her time to be seen—to step out from behind that music stand and just belt it out.
And belt it out she did. You can actually see the moment in the video when Keala takes the song’s message to heart, steps out from behind the music stand and proudly proclaims “This is me.” (If you haven’t seen the video yet, take a look—but be prepared to cry!)
So that’s my goal for 2019: To be myself 100%, to follow my inner voice no matter how crazy it seems to other people and to NEVER apologize for it.
I’d encourage you to do the same. This year, instead of hiding who you are, be proud of who you are! Stand up and say “I am unapologetically authentic” and do what you feel is right for you!
Here are just a few ways to be unapologetically authentic this year:
- Wear that outfit that you love but have left hanging in your closet because you are worried that people would judge you for it. Put it on and be seen! Tip: Be very careful who you share your dream with. If you don’t share it, people can’t crush it! The only one who needs to believe in your dream is you!
- Follow that dream that you’ve had for years but have been too scared to pursue because it sounds a little nuts. Trust me, you will never regret trying, but you will regret not taking action.
- Don’t be motivated by “likes”! Only post things online that you are inspired to share and don’t obsess over the outcome.
- Get in touch with your childish side. What was your favorite thing to do when you were 12, 16 or 20 years old? I bet it’s still something that you enjoy but have abandoned because you got too busy. Go ahead, sign up for that dance class, community theatre production or kickball league. The only thing that could happen is you might have fun! 😉
- Speak up! Don’t let others intimidate you into not sharing your opinion. Tip: Repeat this mantra: “What I have to say is important and deserves to be heard.” Then, take a deep breath and start talking!
How will you commit to being unapologetically authentic in 2019? Leave me a comment and let me know!
To find how unapologetically authentic you are—and get even more ideas on how to become even more unapologetically authentic—take my new quiz!
I took it myself and I scored a 94/100. So even though I wrote the quiz, there’s also plenty of room for me to improve! We are all a work in progress!
Thanks for reading. Now go out and show the world who you are … no apologies!