Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Authentically, Strut Your Stuff!

Breathing grounded me. Stretching empowered me. Artistic expression gifted me. Authentic living...it's made my life one w/o regrets.

Wondering what a pair of leopard-print stilettos has to do with my pledge to live life more authentically?  Trust me, there is a connection!

A girly girl from day one, my most prized holiday gift as a child was a Suzy Homemaker vanity—complete with a three-way mirror, mini grooming kit and pink seat cushion.  My teenaged years were complete with Love’s Baby Soft perfume, floral-printed and pastel everything, and layers of highlighted, carefully-coiffed hair (okay, big hair…sigh!). 

Enter (after a few years’ detour) college and later graduate school, the proverbial career ladder climb and ascension into the management ranks.  Like many women, I subscribed to the established standard that I must always look and act the part of society’s description of a “professional” woman in the workplace.  Off came my long, blond locks and on went the most serious-looking (and even androgynous) dark business suits I could find—complete with starched-stiff collars underneath.  My makeup was scant and my shoes were the least attractive, (almost-manly) sensible flats that could be had.  Gone were any aspects of myself that were too frilly or girly, as I truly believed these hallmarks might undermine subsequent opportunities to successfully “make it” in the working world. 

After far too many years of living a totally unauthentic life, I began to embark (bit by bit) upon a personal quest, which included scads of wisdom seeking, self-nurturing, and introspection.  This led to an eventual shift, which has resulted, this past couple of years, in the most productive, successful, creative and self-fulfilled time of my life; for it is has only been in this past few years that I have come to fully realize my own tickled pinkness. 

Living authentically includes wearing my leopard-print high heels anywhere I desire—even to important workplace meetings.  And, guess what…I’m every bit as professional as I was when adhering to others’ ideals!  Now, however, I’m standing in my truth and living life on my terms.  Being authentically me has enriched my life, made me more confident and happier. My pinkness is who I am, and when I am living authentically, that is truly empowering!  

In what ways can you incorporate more authenticity into your life?   Whatever it is, slip it on and strut your stuff!  T.