Authenticity: What You See Is What You Get
Actually, a colleague and friend of mine brought me to the idea of this blog post. She posted on her IG story how she hated “bloggers” who were just like all the others, without unique content or revolutionary ideas. It made me think about the blogger scene and people in general. I feel like so many people are losing their identity … or even worse don’t even bother finding one. They are just copies of each other or of personas they aspire to be. So this blog post is all about uniqueness, authenticity, and my thoughts on fake people out there.
Now, the first thing I would like to point out here is that I’m by no means considering myself a blogger. I’ve got a webpage and I occasionally (way not as often as I would like to) write blog posts about trips I’ve been on or general thoughts I’m having but this does not make me a blogger. Still, I think authenticity goes so much beyond the blogger life. You don’t have to be a blogger or even be active on social media in order to be or not be authentic.
I can’t explain what authenticity exactly is but I can promise you that it plays the most important role in the process of getting to know somebody. To me, nothing is more significant than being surrounded by someone who is true to themselves. I don’t want to be surrounded by seemingly perfect people, without flaws and over-the-top characteristics, but no personality. We all know this kind of person who has been in our lives for months or even years and still, we can’t tell anything about them that we hadn’t already known after the first encounter. When somebody asks us about them we can’t say anything but “They are nice”. And I don’t mind saying that about someone I just met 2 hours ago and haven’t spoken with more than “Hi, how is it going?” and “Terrible weather out there, ha?”, but I do mind saying this about someone who I’ve known for so long that I should be able to write whole books about them.
You might now think “Maybe you haven’t spent enough time with them” or “You might have not listened carefully enough”, but the thing with these authenticity-free people is that time does not matter. You could be spending 24/7 with them and still, you would end up with the exact same knowledge about them as before. Even if you taped every single conversation with them and listened to it until you knew them by heart, you wouldn’t learn more about who they are and what makes them unique.
I’ve been thinking about this topic for quite a while now. Mainly because I realized how much I’ve changed since I got out of school and started completely fresh. I’ve noticed that something has changed about the way I see myself now. Back then I did not like talking to other people (especially not if they were strangers), I tried to escape every single social situation and rather stayed within my safety zone instead of going out there and experiencing something completely new. As I’ve already mentioned in one of my other blog posts, I dealt with a lot of nervousness, tenderness, and anxiety because the unexpected made me crazy. I had to know everything at all times and costs and if there was only one single thing happening (or could be happening) that I did not have full control over I would totally lose my mind. Back then, I thought this was just me, my character, my personality and my urge for perfection. I thought I was being careful, not controlling, attentive, not obsessed and shy, not insecure. As I see it now, it wasn’t really me being me that led to all this but it was the fact that I did not know who I was and therefore, couldn’t be authentic.
Being a teenager is a really strange phase. Suddenly, everything gets a meaning and everything becomes so terribly awkward that you feel like your whole life is just existing of scenes of a movie you aren’t supposed to be in. As a teenager, I thought I knew who I was and thought that everything I was seeing was how the world was supposed to be. As a teenage girl, spending most of her time in the comfort of her way too purple room, writing her diary at 4:00 am, wondering about what life would be like in a few years, I couldn’t see anything through somebody else’s eyes because I couldn’t even see myself.
Back then, I had big dreams, even bigger hopes but no clue who I would become in some years. I wanted to fit in, be one of the others but at the same time, I wanted to be me – so desperately. It took me a while until I realized that teenage years were supposed to be awkward and that there was nothing wrong with me. It also took me a while to find out that during high school everybody wants to fit in but later in life, everybody wants to stand out. Because the fitting-everywhere-in-people aren’t the ones you’ll remember for the rest of your life, aren’t the ones you will read about in the papers, and certainly aren’t the ones you will google late at night, holding a glass of wine in your hand and wondering why you’ve never seen more in them than just your boring classmate.
Being different, standing out, and being nothing like the others is a good thing – at least it is once you get out of high school and can finally do what you’re meant to do. Being authentic is becoming more and more important in a world that is so full of fakeness. Being true to yourself and standing up for what you believe in can inspire others to do the same thing and take care of all the fake people in your life because they can’t harm you once they see you’re comfortable with who you are.
As always, please leave me a comment if you want to share something and I hope you liked this post!