Be Yourself, Only Better

goldfish jumping out of the waterHave you ever noticed that a lot of people simply aren’t comfortable in their own skin? Of course you have. I have too. I think it may be true of all of us at different times in our lives. Ultimately, however, we learn and we grow. So, most of us seem to find a level of self-acceptance allows us to have rewarding and successful lives.

What Authenticity Is

Frankly, though, there are some people who translate their discomfort into a quest for self-reinvention. Others, it seems, translate it into an obsessive concern with authenticity. Regarding being authentic, a friend of mine once made the interesting observation that “The people most concerned with being authentic, usually aren’t.” [Tweet This] Perhaps this sort of façade is what prompted Gapingvoid cartoonist, Hugh Mac­Leod, to call one of his e-books, Authenticity Is The New Bulls**t. In it, he lays out a pretty simple success philosophy:

“i. Work hard.

ii. Be nice.

ii. Have great product or service.

iv. Don’t suck.”

I like it. Yet, I think a rewarding and successful life can be even simpler, and may only take trying to be just a little better every single day. While I’d love to claim this insight as my own, it’s actually something I discovered quite by chance. So, let me tell you a little story…

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Why Uncover & Tell Your Story…? Here’s Why!

Your StoryHave you ever been urged to tell your story? Chances are good that you’ve heard this advice more than once. And yet, perhaps like many other people, there never seems to be a very compelling reason to do so. Well, unless you’re preparing for a job interview.

Yet, the question, “What’s your story?” is neither idle nor superficial. [Tweet This]

Still, it can be helpful to know why uncovering and sharing your story – as well as listening to other people’s stories – can be good for your career … and for your life in general. As Lisa Cron documents, in Wired for Story, there is solid brain science behind storytelling. Specifically,

“Neuroscientists believe the reason our already overloaded brain devotes so much precious time and space to allowing us to get lost in a story is that without stories, we’d be toast. Stories allow us to simulate intense experiences without actually having to live through them.  … [In fact,]… our expectations [of a story] have everything to do with the story’s ability to provide information on how we might safely navigate this earthly plane.”

Put another way,

“Story is the language of experience, whether it’s ours, someone else’s, or that of fictional characters. Other people’s stories are as important as the stories we tell ourselves. Because if all we ever had to go on was our own experience, we wouldn’t make it…”

Benefiting from a good story is, on some level, like hiring a coach or consultant. Someone who has the kind of information you need to survive and improve so you can live successfully. And while you might not think about it, your story matters to the people who you want to hire you!

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