FROM BEARS: Yes, it's a "high flame" 300-level program at the Option Institute. Yes, it's about showing up 100% of the time without a mask. It's about designing one you -- not multiple versions that include false faces and omissions. It's about really understanding that any and every relationship -- with spouses, partners, children, parents, friends, colleagues -- will flourish if you trust yourself to be yourself -- every time, every place -- really!!!
AUTHENTICITY, NOT PEOPLE-PLEASING, BUILDS CLOSE RELATIONSHIPS AND SAFETY. We have been taught to say what people want to hear, to mask our true selves and to focus on who we should be rather than being who we sincerely are. Actually, the key to creating loving and nourishing relationship is to say what we really think and feel (hopefully, with kindness)... and be ourselves 100%. (Not 90%, not 70%, not half-time -- but 100%.) It's an experience of freedom and kindness and caring to share who we actually are.
Solid/sincere/safe love relationships as well!
When we live authentically, we never have to live in fear of being "found out." We're already congruent inside and out. Then, we get to be loved for who we are, not for who we pretend to be. Additionally, authenticity is like breathing fully; inauthenticity is holding back, hiding, suffocating. And yes, there are consequences to authenticity (honest interactions, people knowing who we are and choosing to be with us and not be with us). And yes, there are consequences to inauthenticity (isolation, fraud, fear).
Neither way is "the way."
We have a choice -- and each choice - to be authentic or inauthentic - leads to a very different destination.
Love, Bears (Barry Neil Kaufman)
P.S. Radical Authenticity is available on CD -- including a talk on the nature of authenticity and inauthenticity, plus dynamic class interactions so you can hear/experience/learn from what others dare to do.