Diana Hartley, Authentic Leadership Consultant, Member Contribution
We live in a world were anonymous voices, images and words constantly command our attention telling us what to do and how to be. The intrusion of mass and social media is increasing as job dissatisfaction, uncertainty, addiction and depression are also on the rise. What’s going on? We can try to insulate ourselves with money and success, but we can still feel that something is missing. Sometimes in our quieter moments, we feel this discontent and ask ourselves, “Is there something not right in my life?” Hospice nurse, Bronne Ware, wrote a book called, The Top Five Regrets of the Dying. In it, she interviewed people to find out their deepest end of life regrets. She was told time and again that the number one regret was not living their lives true to themselves but doing what others expected of them. In other words, they regretted not fulfilling their life’s purpose. Authenticity, defined as being true to one's own personality, spirit, or character, requires self-knowledge and courage. We have all had those moments when we want to say or do something but keep quiet because we are afraid to either stand out, look foolish or be criticized. We sacrificed ourselves to go along with the crowd. Having the courage to move beyond these fears can bring great satisfaction and success. When we follow our true north, life becomes more fun, creative and fulfilling. Some fortunate people seem to be born to live out their dreams and we admire them, while most of us stay silent or take years to do what we want. It feels so right to live from the inside out. Nothing can rival it. Fortunately, more and more organizations are encouraging their employees to bring their talents, gifts and passions to work. Here are some of the benefits that successful organizations have experienced when the value of authenticity is at their core.  ·       Empowered teams, increased loyalty, trustworthiness, collaboration, confidence, engagement and commitment. Authentic people express gratitude and work diligently toward creating and sustaining success. ·       They build a community that works together for a common goal, focused, innovative and creative. Feelings of contentment, fulfillment and accomplishment follow when people are freed the boxes of their job titles. ·       Employees can become top performers at all levels offering innovative solutions. ·       Authentic leaders model bravery that helps everyone step out and build cultures of engagement at all levels. Diversity of thought is welcomed. ·       And yes, it is possible to build this kind of vitality and creativity into an existing organization. Can you remember a time when a great idea burst into your mind and you just had to share it? Often, when it comes from the depths of us, it’s the perfect solution to a challenging problem. Wasn’t it exhilarating? Didn’t it feel right? That’s just one of the many gifts of being authentic.            
“Our time is limited, don’t waste it living someone else’s life.” — Steve Jobs
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The Gifts of Authenticity,
Permission to bring your true self to work and to life
the coach is in
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