I have really struggled with this.

I really care what others think about me. I spend a lot of time thinking about others thoughts rather than my own. So much energy focusing on what others think of me, rather than checking in with myself to see how I am feeling.

Perhaps this sounds familiar?

Well, if you feel this way, know that you are not alone.

Now I’ve got a friend from college who I love dearly. I respect the shit out of them actually. Why? Because they are so damn authentic. They are themselves in every moment, and I know I’ll always be able to count on him because of this. It took me some time, but over the years I have learned a lot from him. At first I used to resist our conversations, wondering if anyone was listening in to what we were saying. This was my insecurities speaking loudly. So as I’ve grown to be more mindful, I’ve found myself more accepting of our conversations. More present in the moment, listening actively to every word. Not giving two shits about what anyone is thinking. Feeling alive.

I think what makes authenticity so special is that you truly love yourself as you are. Free from expectations and perceptions. In a nut shell, you give no fucks. When you find someone who is authentically themselves, you have struck gold. Hold onto this person and learn from them, much like I have done with my friend.

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