You’ve got to get real. It’s the only way.

If you’re not, then people can’t know who you really are.

Therein lies the crux of the matter.

We’re afraid if people know who we really are, they’ll reject us.

That’s what your fear tells you. In prehistoric times, if you got rejected by the tribe, you died. Your exile would most likely lead to your early demise. Your amygdala/ lizard brain reminds you of this every time you consider doing something that makes you different from the rest.

So we blend, even if it means hiding big portions of who we are. We play along because that’s what keeps the world moving smoothly. The less waves you make, the better off everyone is.

In the grip of the lizard brain and our culture’s mandate to conform, we’re between a rock and hard place. If you are convinced that you must hide an essential part of yourself in order to survive, then that’s what you’re going to do. It’s human nature. So we smile, while inside we feel like imposters. When you’re hiding, you are always in danger of being found out. This puts enormous stress on our bodies and minds.

Don’t let it happen. You’re better than that.

If you have any interest in achieving your human potential in this lifetime, you cannot live this way.

When we suppress what makes us unique, we deprive ourselves of what makes us feel alive. A piece of you starts to die inside. At first it’s numbing, but later it feels like fatigue, anxiety, and depression.

It’s possible that you may be expelled from the tribe when you show your true self.

That’s fine, because your real tribe can’t find you until you stand up and show yourself.

You just need to have the guts to do it. You need to find a way to quiet the lizard brain long enough to take one small step in the direction of your aspirations.

What happens next might surprise you.

Some will criticize you, maybe even condemn you. Maybe that’s because seeing you take a step toward your dreams reminds them of their own work that needs to be done. You will have detractors, because you’ve disrupted the balance. You’ve created a shift, and that makes most people uncomfortable. So there will be some who move away from you, some who fade away from your life.

But there will be others who see you, really see you for the first time. They see the risk and the daring, and in that they recognize a longing within themselves. They pay attention because they want to see if you can be authentic and not get killed. I’m kidding. Sort of.

Some are so ready to do it themselves that they applaud your effort, regardless of the results. When you’re being your authentic self, when you allow your gifts to shine through, you act as a beacon to others. You show them it is safe to do the same.

That’s how you recognize your new tribe. That’s how your new tribe recognizes you.

Each of us wants to be truly seen and accepted for who we are.

The point of all this is joy. It’s about finding joy.

Your authentic self is an expert at helping you find it.