Just Be Who Ya Are

by Dian Reid-Jancic· Follow Dian on

I began this post nearly 18 months ago, and it’s been pulling me to come back to it today, so here we are. As I contemplate the new year, my intentions for said new year, and what I need to look at to honor those intentions, I’m drawn to the idea of coming out again. Over and over our authentic selves are longing to be heard, to be seen, to be honored. And as I contemplate coming out, I’m reminded that coming out isn’t just for the gay folk in the world.

Coming out is something each and every one of us does or thinks about or wishes we could do. The key components of coming out are values, fear, and authenticity. Values, in that you’ve got to understand what’s important to you if there’s to be any sort of coming out at all. Fear, in that it scares the bejesus (what, exactly, is a ‘bejesus’ anyway?) out of us to think about being all of the things and traits we keep on the inside. And authenticity…well, that’s who’s driving you to ‘come out’ in the first place.

It’s important to address these three pieces individually, and then talk about putting them all together to apply them to your real life. I’ve gotten numerous comments, emails, and messages about how one doesn’t have to be gay to understand or feel each part of the puzzle. So let’s take a look at the puzzle:

Values. This is a word thrown around in government and politics. Up until I began coaching, I thought of it as a buzz word, a bad word, an “ugh-not-that-stupid-values-thing-again…” word. If you share that view of the word and idea of “values,” I want you to pretend that view is a hot potato in your hands. [This is the part where you drop it].

Values, as the word and concept apply to your life, has nothing to do with government or politics or trying to get you to sympathize or vote or follow one way or another. Values, as they apply to your life, are just that: your life. Your values are you. Your values are not right, they’re not wrong, they’re just who you are and what’s important to you.

Values are not morals. Values are not ethics. Values are not right-wing or left-wing.

Values are honesty. Or being the best at something. Or reading. Or spending time with family. Or watching baseball. Or singing karaoke. Or being laid back. They’re the things you do consistently because, you know, you value them. Funny thing is, sometimes we don’t realize how much we value something until we look at what we do consistently. The things we value aren’t always the things we idealize. They’re often the things we do out of habit because we’ve gotten out of practice with the values we actually want to honor.

So then maybe there are some values you want to take a look at and make some changes. What do you do consistently that you want to change? Drink? Smoke? Sit on the couch and watch TV? Stay in the closet? Hide your true feelings from friends, family, coworkers?

One of my values in 2012 has been hibernation, or plainly put: hiding. Maybe it began as hibernation, just to get my bearings. And what started as taking a break to get some rest turned into something like an ostrich with her head buried in the sand because the world on the surface has been too chaotic to handle. Or, at least, that’s how I saw it. I can smell the fear, can’t you?

Fear. When we take a look at our values—the things we actually do, not just what we say we value—it’s scary. We see things we don’t want to see and try to pretend like they’re not really there. Like sitting on the couch with a beer or glass of wine when you get home instead of taking the dog out for a walk. Like over-promising and under-delivering on resolutions and intentions year after year after year. Like failing at friendships because it feels safer (or just easier) to bury your head in the sand for months at a time.

If we let fear rule our lives, we stay with our heads buried in the sand. Eventually we burrow ourselves so deeply into the ground that we lose our connection with who we are, the values we’ve intended for ourselves, and the authentic voice within that’s been longing to sing our songs of truth from the depths of our souls since we first took cover beneath the sand.

Poking your head above ground can be scary, but luckily you know how to deal with the scary things in life that try and keep you small. It involves calling upon that authentic voice and letting her sing her song, no matter how pitchy or muffled her voice has become.

Authenticity. Don’t let the new year fool you into thinking you have to rebuild yourself from the ground up. You are who you are, and regardless of what changes you make, you need to start right where you stand. Start with that muffled voice. Listen to her. What is she trying to say? What does she want for you? What are her intentions for you? Let her speak and do not judge her. Let her sing and honor her words, her fears, her desires, her presence.

By honoring your authentic voice, you’re honoring yourself. In honoring yourself, you come out as your authentic self. There is no trying in authenticity, there is only being. All you have to do is allow yourself to simply beBe who ya are.

What’s your authentic voice singing about so far in 2013?
If you’re not sure, check out Authentic Photo-A-Day to see what’s stirring, and get back to me 🙂

  • SquarePegKaren

    LOVE this, Dian!! “Be who ya are.” is the bestest suggestion/advice/love message!

    In answer to your question, my authentic voice is singing about singing so far in 2013. No particular topic – just the joy of singing whatevva she wants (loudly – even if out of tune!).

    • Thanks, dear, glad it speaks to you 🙂 Oh how I’d love to hear your authentic voice sing, even if out of tune! I can totally relate. My voice is a little rusty and out of tune right now, but hey she’s glad to be singing with you and yours. xoxo

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