“Everyone tells a story about themselves inside their own head. Always. All the time. That story makes you what you are. We build ourselves out of that story” – Patrick Rothfuss
Think about your current leadership role for a moment. How do you see yourself? How do your teams and stakeholders see you? Do you conduct yourself in a way that is true to who you really are?
These are really interesting questions because in many respects, the answers come from within your own head. The way we see ourselves drives the way that we conduct ourselves and importantly, the way that others see us.
Who we are, how we act and how others respond to us – all these are driven by the story that we carry between our ears. The story that we tell ourselves over and over. To me, Patrick Rothfuss’ words ring true – “That story makes you what you are”.
The story that you build in your own mind is central to who you are and in turn, how others see you.
Authenticity shows through when your words and actions are grounded in that central, pivotal story. The leaders, writers and speakers that I most admire do this really well.
I love the way that Francine Hirst gives voice to her story – simple, poignant, lyrical and vulnerable. Fran lives her story and is courageous enough to invite us in – it shows through in the way she expresses herself, in her words and actions. To me, that is as the heart of true authenticity.
Lisa Petrilli has a wonderful view of the world and our innate ability to find our own place. Her writing is open, honest, poignant and deeply grounded in a sense of self. I really admire the way that Lisa has the the confidence in who she is to be able to share her story in such an open, honest way. Confronting? Yes. Gutsy? Oh Yeah!
Shannon Hernandez is another of my true superheroes – everything he says and does is dripping with authenticity – his story is energetic, engaging, passionate, enthusiastic and vibrant – when I read his work, I am drawn into his world and get that immediate and powerful sense of who he is and what is at his core. Shannon’s story lives and breathes in everything he does.
As a leader, you need to stay true to your story. Focus on that, give voice to the picture in your head – let people see who you are and what you believe in <= Tweet this!.
Just as people can readily spot a fake, they will also jump to embrace honesty and authenticity. Trust your instincts, have faith in your story and give it a voice <= Tweet this!.