A few years ago when my children went to spend a few weeks with their aunt and cousins in Pennsylvania, my wife and I decided to visit New Orleans.
We had always wanted to visit the town mostly to experience Bourbon Street, but also to experience the vibrancy of its history.
We visited many clubs and bars, as we were still drinking at the time, and we just checked the boxes at the tourist traps and famous locations.
We ended up at a place named Lafitte’s Blacksmith Shop.
Jean Lafitte was a pirate who lived in New Orleans in the late 1700’s and was known to be able to provide whatever one might need.
In other words, he robbed from people to provide things to other people who would pay.
Not the most credible of professions, but I digress…
Lafitte’s Blacksmith Shop offered no electricity in the seating and bar areas, was candlelit, and had an aura of authenticity of its historic past.
Although my wife Angie and I did not particularly care for the food and drink offerings, we continued to visit the location because of the feel inside.
It just felt good. I can’t describe it. Its aura and ambiance were comforting and inviting.
I don’t think we really indulged much there, we were just attracted to the way the shop made us feel.
When I think of New Orleans, I think of that feeling.
Fast forward a few years…
I had a client recently express that he feels that he is afraid to be himself. He feels that if he truly opens up, he will turn off others because of his energy, light-hearted humor, and his quick wit.
He is afraid he is not good enough, and at the same time, too much.
He expressed that daily he is acting out a character, just like everyone else.
I believe he is mostly correct.
I have found that most of our society, most people, are acting out characters, miserably, all together.
Like the Emperor With No Clothes. We just keep the secret going afraid to be the one to stick out.
I once felt the same. I was told that I needed to turn my down my energy and enthusiasm in order to attract people to me and my business.
I needed to act, to be a character, to achieve.
I did so, and because I was pretending to be someone I am not, I struggled internally. I could never quite figure out how to become the moving target I was supposed to become.
All I had to do is figure out exactly who the other person wanted me to be.
There are only 300,000,000 people in the United States, and I just needed to figure out which one of those 300,000,000 would interest my potential client the most.
And I would become that person.
I attracted no one. My pretending failed. My aura was fake, false, unattractive.
So I attracted no one.
I felt alone and confused. I just need to figure out who I was supposed to be to become successful.
And one day I ran into a successful individual who was just letting himself rip. He was hyper-energetic, hyper-optimistic, and hyper-motivated… just like me.
And he is very successful. He just lets himself loose in the world.
He has an aura. You can feel his energy.
You can see his authenticity in his eyes.
He just lets it rip. He shows up real in the world. And it has worked. He often points to the fact that before he decided to show up authentically, he had some mild success. But when he allowed himself to begin showing up real, he took off.
He is successful and happy.
People can feel authenticity. They might not fully need or enjoy your offerings, but they love being around your energy and aura.
People feel when you are being genuine. They see the realness
in your eyes.
After meeting this guy who I have grown to greatly admire, I began to let myself show up real.
I began to let it rip.
Energy, passion, enthusiasm, optimism, edginess, a bit of cursing…
I had held back my whole life.
I began to let the real me shine.
And I began attracting people like never before.
I am too much for some, but that is internal suffering they are facing. That is not my issue to resolve.
Judgment is suffering seeking a way to release. Other’s judgment is none of your business.
Today I am working with people who desire freedom. These people see my authenticity – my no holds barred approach to being myself…
… and they are attracted to what I bring. Trying to be someone else, a character not only made me miserable, but it made me average.
Being myself makes me the best me possible… and we are never average when we show up real, when we share our unique gifts with the world – authentically.
I have learned many things in this lifetime, but the most painful and valuable lesson of all has been one which held me back and has now created immense freedom.
Being genuine, showing up authentically in the world is the only way to truly achieve happiness, to free yourself, and to achieve worldly success while allowing yourself to actually enjoy the ride and rewards.
You can achieve by being a false character, but you can achieve and feel fulfilled by being real in the world.
A High-Performance Lifestyle, one in which you achieve prosperity in mind, body, and spirit, can only be attained by being authentic and genuine.
Being anything else causes internal suffering.
Just like Lafitte’s Blacksmith Shop, people feel your aura. When you are real, people are attracted to your aura.
When you are a character, you spend time chasing who you are not, and you spend time chasing people who feel your fake aura.
And those people you chase are gathering with people who shine their authenticity.
I offer these words of encouragement; you are enough.
If you do not feel like you are enough to show up real in the world today…
If you do not feel significant today…
If you do not feel successful today…
There is internal, emotional work to be done which will free you from your suffering.
I have felt the same, and have carried out the work to heal.
Healing is possible. The decision is up to you.
Feel the true power and aura of authenticity.