Ep80 Being Authentically Authentic, A Key to Happiness


Uh. Everybody thank you for tuning into episode eighty of the virtual couch. I'm your host Tony over. I'm a licensed marriage family therapist, certified lab coach writer, speaker husband, father, four ultra marathon runner in creator of the path back and online pornography addiction recovery program that is helping people reclaim their lives from pornography, diction, if you or anyone that you know is struggling with pornography diction. Please point them to pass back recovery dot com. There you can download a short e book that describes five and mistakes that people make when trying to overcome pornography addiction. Again, that is path back recovery dot com. And I was doing all I could write into try to stifle a hiccup. I thought I took care of those. I've been trying to record for about five minutes and in the hiccups tried like the swallowing, the water and that sort of thing. So forgive me, I'm gonna leave him in because that's gonna go right along today with part of what the the topic of the podcast is episode eighty. I mean, welcome to the eighties. Now we're talking. This is my decade. This is when I grew up. Let me let me see what I can kinda pull off my top. Ahead here. We've got eighties hair bands. What leg warmers, new wave music is odd shirts. MTV phrases gagging with a spoon tubular. We had after school specials, the walkman break dancing, always my favorite jokes about whenever we're throwing out cardboard at our house. My wife always asked my wife. Do we keep enough cardboard for my break dancing? What else was was teddy wreck spin? Awesome. Or was he creepy mix tapes, long phone cords, trapper keepers and don't forget the be kind rewind actually. So how many of you who grew up in eighties have had that experience as your kid. Now benches on all ten episodes of something, stranger things in one setting of even remotely, trying to describe what life was like with the three or the four channels and VHS cassettes and having a fast forward or rewind like for real, only to see your kids eyes gloss over as they tell you they're bored while they're scrolling through Instagram with one ear, but in and all the while being aware enough that if a sibling runs by they. In triple yet. I digress. So welcome to episode eighty and super-quick as always thanks for the continued support and feedback head over to Tonio dot com. Sign up to receive more info, upcoming programs podcast, and all that good stuff in on Instagram, virtual couch, and I wanna let you know that I did an interview last week with Heidi Linford. She is from the joyful soul project. That's the name of her podcast. Go find Heidi's podcast and subscribe. I think, well, I think I will link to it in the show notes and I'm excited for that interview air, but I think it's going to be a couple of weeks, but I know I think last week she had on friend of the podcast Jody more. So she's Heidi's had some really good interviews there, but we covered everything. I mean, I really, I love the ones where I get to be interviewed on someone else's podcast because typically they can kind of get me going on number of topics. So we covered marriage. We covered parenting, covered, pornography, diction. We cover betrayal, trauma intimacy, you name it. She brought it out into me and I'm excited for you to hear that. So where I wanna go today. I wanna talk about one of the questions that I get asked the most, and here is what typically sounds like it's not very complicated actually. But the question is that I mentioned, I often mentioned the phrase being authentic, but what does that actually mean is that just a therapy buzzword being thin and it comes up into my practice often too. So I'm gonna tell a few stories today are member few years ago that I was asking somebody where was that they felt like they could truly be authentic. And I meant this in this situation as a place to kind of build from, I was trying to find a place where we can say, okay, here's here's something. Here's where we can start raising your motion baseline. Where do you feel like you're being the most offensive and the person kind of froze. And it was one of the situations where therapy often say, you know, never ask the question that that you don't know the answer to k super funny example this to me, I guess as I had a couple in once and the the wife looked over to me and asked me, you know, actually had to do. I've mentioned hiccups earlier, but had to do with, I think, kinda burping or something. And. She said, all you, my husband will Burr or something in front of the kids, and they gig on they laugh and she looks over. I mean, you've never done that right, and I just thought, oh, okay. Talk about needing to be authentic here. It was kind of like, kinda, have, you know, so have to say that. And then I felt like it kind of lost her at that moment. And I like the guy kind of just had that little smile on his face or something, but here's the part where with this, this person I'm talking about in particular, and by the way, I'm not saying that I sit here and I- belts during therapy, that's not the point. Although watch this tangent fun fact, I was a share. This was somebody last week. One of the things that I never saw coming in therapy, and I don't know if it's just because people get in here and they are just they are just talking. They talk and they talk and they talk and maybe they're not used to talking that much, but I will tell you once or twice a week, probably it's probably not as dramatic as I think, but you just got somebody who's talking and talking and then can outcomes a little bit of a burp. They didn't see come in, they say, excuse me. And now having done this for so long. I, you know, I often want to say perfectly normal. People do it all the time in my office. But again, it's not like I'm sitting here doing burp. Therapy or something like that. But in this situation though, with this guy, I'm saying, all right. Tell me about this time that you were thick and I'm ready for him to just give me something that we can work with, and then he kind of, again, this this look that I just knew we. He wasn't necessarily going into a good place in his head. He was in a marriage. It wasn't happy. He wasn't happy with this parenting style. He was in a career where he felt like he wasn't necessarily engaged. You're struggling with this faith turned on healthy behaviors to cope. So they're all these feelings of disconnect. And it just really didn't go where I hoped it would go. And I remember that again, it was two or three years ago, and it was one of the times where I started thinking about how how Athetic are, was I at the time or how Antic are people in my family or and I really started trying to work more toward helping people find out who their offense itself was. And it kind of reminded me why I had left my first queer in the software industry because at that time I felt like I wasn't being allowed to be a thick and I was young. I didn't have the skills or the knowledge of that. Time to feel like I could do anything about it. I mean, look back on it now and of course I could, but I remember working for company once where we would attend meetings and we were fairly small company and whoever we were meeting with would maybe ask us at some point how big company. And I learned quickly that I can say anything. I mean, I knew I knew exactly how many people pulled into the parking lot at work, and but depending on who we were talking to, maybe the higher ups at the company would say that phrases like, oh, we're under fifty employees, which technically was true. But sometimes I mean, we were about forty two or forty three employees under fifty, or they asked what we are sales. Sometimes we would say we were under fifty million are we were under ten million again, technically correct, but we were way under fifty or way under ten and I understand where they, you know what the person was trying to do with that. But I remember when I left that particular company and I started my own very first dive into working for myself. I remember typing up my initial linked in profile, and I think it might even had it on my about page of of that. The first website that I that I made, but I went overboard about being honest. Or in this case it was being offended. I talked about, you know, being able to leave the daily rat race of the corporate grind and being able to be honest about the things that I did and the products I made. And if I felt like they were, they were something that my customers need it or not. And I saw these hard-drive duplicates sounds exciting, right? They literally take one hard-drive and copy the data to another and they did so in a way that in the hard drive could be used in a police. Forensic examination could be in court and maintain this chain of evidence and all this kind of fun stuff. But remember taking calls early on where I felt like if somebody was going to be buying my duplicator and it would be overkill, then I would tell them and I would point customers to products or solutions that would do the job for much much less and I felt good about that and I was possibly missing a sale. But the the funny thing was that many of these customers within kind of be surprised that I was telling them that my solution was too expensive and super ironic thing was that often lead to a sale because of my honesty. So kind of funny. Right. But the key was at that time I. Felt like I was being offended. So how often do you run across somebody who becomes a totally different person depending on where they are or who they're with, whoever's in front of him, the crowd that they're running with in front of you there? Positive in kind. But you know, when somebody else comes in the room, then all of a sudden they are. They might be a little bit cold or or maybe it's the opposite where front you. They kind of act like disengaged within when somebody else comes in the room, then they're excited. I hesitated on telling this story, but it's such a positive story. I had a friend once attend a wedding where the senior David Archer was guest. And if you remember him is his rendition of imagine on American idol. I think about often it was amazing, but seems like the nicest guy in the world. Right? So then I'm just joking around with my friend. I was like, okay, hey, that wedding, tell me what he was like. Right. And I was I was telling him on David, you know, when he's not in cameras, telling the wait staff to fetch me this that or his trip and little kids when they run by what's really like. And my buddy said, oh, no. Oh, no. He says, smiling, taking pictures with everybody, approaches them. He's thinking them for for listening to his music, and apparently at this particular event, something gone south at one point with some planning delivery your, I forget what the details were, but he said he's like, get this who was the first guy you know, in the kitchen or doing dishes, or who was the first guy to jump in Bonn tier where he wasn't needed. David, arch Aleta. He was rolling up the sleeves and volunteering. So guess what? He was being authentic, what you saw him, whether you saw him on American idol or an interview was what you got, and I have to tell you right now, I'm working with somebody who one would consider maybe as a fairly big deal and I joked with him or her soon. I'm doing there with confidentiality that was gonna out them as being awesome. Not really because again, that would break confidentiality, but he or she was telling me that they're being there. Thank self was something they had to kind of choose a few years ago, and there was so much easier in the long run and trying to be somebody that they weren't in. Particular industry, they, there are tons of people who are being people that they aren't really being that they aren't being this person said that he or she said that they were aware that they may have actually missed out on an opportunity or two because of being. So thank or passing on things that they didn't feel were right for them or even kind of standing up a little bit for some of the things that they believed, but they felt like they were being totally honest. And at the end of the day, they talked about just feeling unburdened from from not being in the past. That was a pause. I think it'll take out that was that was kind of holding back hiccup, she'll let them go, and it's easier to to feel like you can stand up for yourself or gently correct others when you know that you're being true to yourself. So here's what I mean by that. Let me give you an example. I have. I have a client. I just, I love this client to death. And this client at one point came in and said it said something like their hair look nice or something. And I'm horrible about that. I mean, I trying to be more observant. I don't notice those things as much. I'm so grateful that my own wife puts like hair appointment things on the calendar. I always give calendar glance, so I will know she's getting her haircut on this particular day. So when it come home, I will say, oh my gosh, your hair looks amazing, but I'm being off indigo. I really do because my wife is beautiful and she'd ever hear long or short or curly, or as you shave her head, whatever they can look great. But I remember it. I actually think I do notice it now more. But at that time I felt like, you know. I'm noticing that date on the calendar help. We know that she's got her haircut anyway. I was going off on a tangent there. This particular person said, I say, your hair looks nice. 'cause I knew I could tell it was different, and this person said to me say, oh, that's really nice. If you didn't notice because mandate, you know a few weeks ago, you said how much you hated my hair and I was like, what you know we what would what did inch like you said, I hate the way your hair looks, and that's the part where I know here's me being offenses, this is the beauty of being fintech. There is I do not tease people about physical appearances. I don't make negative comments about physical appearances because I know that those things can hurt. I might make a joke about a situation that someone might be in, but I'm never gonna, say, man, look at that belly, right? Or, hey, how about those love handles now might do that to myself because currently, right now I am working on my love handles as far as like increasing them. I would like to be decreasing them, but I grew up a guy that was losing his hair at the age of seventeen eighteen. I, I used to pull my bangs up. And we would all laugh all the cow high Tony's hair forehead is and at the time I laughed because I didn't know that meant that. Oh yeah. Give me about a year. And then moment hair's gone, but not a big tall guy teased about my height, teased about my hair, that sort of thing. So I grew up not wanting to tease people about their physical traits. So here's somebody telling me, you told me, you hate it my hair. The funny thing too is, and I'm feeling this right now. I don't even say the word hate with my little kids that was always the h word, right? I would say we don't like something but not, hey, so this woman says, you told me specifically that you hate my hair. So I know the authentic says that those are things that I do not say do not do so in that situation, although I have to tell you, I had to model this empathetic response, this motion focused there be this EFT so preach. I wanna to tell this person you're wrong that you're completely wrong. That is not what I said. I had to sit there and go. Okay. Tell me more. Tell me what you remember about that or what you think. And then they said, you said, you hated my hair this day and it's like me and I am so sorry. Put you in the spot where you felt like that's what I said, and that was able to share my truth, right? I was able to say, man, I feel like that's that's so hard for me to hear because then I was able to to share that, you know, accused some violin music and from the time I was a child, I didn't pick on people's air that sort of thing. But anyway, I I knew that I was, I knew the thick meat doesn't say those things. And so I was able to kinda creek that a little bit you when I work with clients who were involved in relationships, for example, on the same note, if they're working with somebody who might be have personalities order, let's take a narcissist. For example, something I get so many emails about after the episode did on narcissism. So I'm teaching them how to disengage from a lot of experts simply call the crazy making conversations are being gas lit. These are the conversations were my client might say to their partner, worried that we aren't doing all we can't as parents and rather than having an empathetic response from a partner like, oh, man, tell me, tell me more about that. Tell me where that's coming from. Tell me about your day. What's going on there where you thinking that way. Let's figure this out. They get a response like, well. Kind of waiting for you to say that because honestly, if you get your act together, then maybe they wouldn't be doing what they're doing now, because you know, it's not me because I don't let them get away with that stuff. Yeah, or something like that to that effect, which if you've been in one of those conversations you already know at that point, it's not going to go well. So I do work with clients who were trying to learn how to disengage. So at that point, if they know that a conversations and going to be productive than they learn how to kind of step back and not again, not go tit for tat and I go to battle not go get in there bunker and start throwing out insults because we know that's not productive, but where was I going with that. Okay. So when you are truly comfortable with your intensity, then the one time that you may engage in a situation like this is when the narcissist or actually when anyone tries to speak for you or tries to join you in with their beliefs like like I kind of mentioned there before where you utilize hated my hair. Then if you know the authentic, you can speak up for yourself in that situation. Here's an example that will kind of illustrate that. So this is maybe you're talking to somebody and they say, well, you know. We both don't like cats and me while you're literally like wearing a shirt. This says, I love cats. I love every kind of cat. And your job is you run a home for way were kittens, and you have to have a podcast called cats are my life. So if you're thin dick, then you say, oh, no, no, no, I love cats. I mean, I really do. I'm gonna stand up for that one instead of just kind of feeling like, well, I don't know, and I don't want to make them feel silly or anything like that. We're being authentic. We are going to speak up. There is we want to hold their boundaries. So what the authentic person does, however, is it when they are around somebody that they know doesn't like cats than they might say? Yeah, I don't really like either, you know, or when they're in a group of people are all talking bad about cats. They don't say a word, the the person say, you know, I love you guys, but I have to tell you, I love cats. So back to my question, how often do you run across that person who changes they change who they are at every turn? Is that somebody that you're typically drawn to or somebody that you are impressed with? I would. I would. Guess probably not or are you ever that person? And I have to tell you that part of why I love what I do, and part of why I wanted to start the podcast because that I really am beeling like I'm on this journey to being offensive myself and authentic with the things that I've learned in my practice over the last decade. It got to the point where that's where I just felt like I wanted to share enough so that I just desperately wanna help. So just some examples of that, you know, if we look at the world of the and I'm gonna go through a few of these, so, but if you go through the world of pornography, diction, for the most part, we know it's a coping mechanism for people who don't feel connected people who aren't happy with their relationships or their careers, or their health or their parenting styles. And they maybe had early exposure to pornography addiction. So the wiring, the brain becomes a bit set so that whenever they have these uncomfortable feelings, these feelings of inadequacy, these feelings of disconnect when those feelings occur. The brain naturally says, I know what we can do and what we can do. So you don't have to feel the negative feelings that you're feeling. Here's a place that we can go and check out even though immediately after. That person is not going to feel good about themselves the where it was going with this as we know that there's so much good data and evidence around removing the guilt and the toxic shame around addiction. The addict already knows that it's bad. They don't want to be doing the behavior, the data's there in droves and worked with over a thousand men who have this problem, and there is a way to overcome it. There is hope even people who didn't think that there was, but the road to recovery is not paved shame. That's me being offended. I can't back down from that. Addiction is fueled by shame. The addict brain already is convinced that it can't get better. It's tried. So as soon as I let the next person down, this is the attic brain saying that then I can get right back to my addiction. So when I'm working with someone, I begged them to trust me in that there's not going to be the guilt or shame for me. Bring your data. We can work with this day by day. Let's find the victories. Let's find hope there are solutions there. No, you haven't tried everything. And a big piece of that is removing the shame that is part of my story. Now, marriages emotionally focused therapy EFT one of these soapbox items, it's an evidence based method method that works. It creates a framework. To communicate emotionally focused. Their be is about being vulnerable. It's about making these emotional bids. It's about attachment theory issues around attachment growing up or in early relationships where we have tried to be vulnerable. We've tried to be authentic with somebody, but they responded in a way that is felt fixing or judge judgy, and and it shuts us down. So you know, I know that having a partner listen pathetically and not respond with fixing your judgment works. So that is something that is very authentic to me. I often have couples when they come in here brand new and they have been to maybe non evidence evidence-based couples modalities for for couples therapy. Whereas maybe just again, just the reflective listening. Tell me what they said. Tell me what they said. Now you guys have at it that they're, they're still in that mindset. So when I'm trying to say, look, I've got a framework and we want to get to the point where you feel like you can tell your partner, anything where you feel like you can really open up to them emotionally vulnerable and you know you can count on them. They are going to be there for you and they're gonna listen to you. They're gonna. Listen. And say, okay, I know that my spouse did not wake up this morning and how going to hurt the other person. How am I gonna hurt the other spouse? We know that's not what they did. So. So then what they did instead is if they're coming to you with this emotional pain or this emotional bid, we know that we as as as the partner, the spouse, hearing the emotional bid we need to get in that mindset where I care about this person. I wanna know where this is coming from again, they didn't wake up and just think I'm gonna throw the stuff out there and try to hurt me. So I'm gonna, listen with empathy. I'm gonna try to try to understand my partner more kind of going off on a little bit of a tangent there, but my whole point is being, you know, bring me that couples therapy, and I've got this evidence-based modality that I know I feel so thick in me that it works that that will work with that or the nurtured heart parenting. Again, it's evident space rewards, positive. You're not fueling the negative. Sure. You don't celebrate negative behavior. You don't turn your back on it, but you set clear boundaries and natural consequences. And then you look for opportunities to build inner wealth. In your kids or in your spouse or in that's not done by telling them they're an idiot, or do you realize how bad they're blowing, authentic me. Sorry, you can try and convince me that telling someone that you don't like them. We're telling somebody there again, they're blowing it or trying to shame them. We'll work because again, if I'm being thin. Antic. I don't believe that's the case. Now, the truth is we all have moments of in authentically, it can be difficult to maintain being offensive and comfortable situations, sometimes unfamiliar situations, and that is going to take some practice because you might worry that here's the problem. Your real self isn't going to be good enough or procreate for the situation, a hand, or here's a big one that I run into people that fear rejection. You might be around a bunch of people and then you feel less than or you feel like, you know if they're talking about politics or the news of the day, that if you jump in and say, hey, here's my dick self at really watch the news. You know they're going, oh, they're gonna say, we'll get out, you know that. So we fear that rejection. So it caused us not to feel good enough at times. That's a challenge of being benthic. So instead of showing his yourself, you will show up oftentimes as the person that you think that everybody else is gonna like the hard part for me is I'm sitting here working when people on a daily basis that are telling the about the times where somebody around them, maybe somebody in a in a. Work environment. Somebody in a Sunday school class, somebody in even a group exercise class is letting someone know, hey, this is something that's hard for me. Then all of a sudden that you know that person my client says, man, I feel like I can say something that's hard for me to, you know, working on an episode that I'm very, very excited to talk about about working with people who are struggling with faith crisis or faith journeys. I do a lot of lot of Christian counseling and in those situations, you know, there is a real fear of being. I'm somebody who taught an early morning Sunday school class and early morning, similar class for years. And so then one would assume that than I am incredibly knowledgeable in the scriptures or those sort of things, but I'm not. I'm just not. That's my self. So I would sit in the classroom maybe an adult school classroom, and I would have people, you know, will Tony taught seminary for seven years. So I'm sure he'll know everything and I to the point where almost want to not go to some of those classes because I was worried I, we get called on. But then during this journey. To my self. It's like, hey, guess what? I don't have to be someone with a photographic memory. I don't have to be somebody that remembers every story. Good for the person that does seriously. And I mean that like I'm grateful and I wish I at times had that ability, but I don't. And so I'm this. Okay, that's me. So I remember one of the first time if somebody called on the and said, you know, hey, here's this kind of random story from the Old Testament, Tony Utah seminary. Why don't you tell us about it? And I remember saying, oh, I don't remember that one at all. You know, even the instructor at the time thought a, they'll, they thought they could have some fun and a little shame out there that what you taught all those years and you didn't. You don't remember that. I was like, oh, no. Matter of fact, there's not a whole lot. I remember, but I really enjoyed this situation. I love showing, you know, the students I worked with how much I love him. I love showing that they didn't have to be perfect. But thankfully I've got a little device in my hand that I can search for a topic or and then I can. But I can tell you that story gimme a couple seconds. I'm really good at Google and things. There's my self, right? So so when we show up as our selves instead of. Showing up like the person. Everybody else thinks that we think everybody else will like that's part of that journey toward being. So let me get to the meat today's episode and actually really quick. I promise I'll do this fast, but before I do that, let me let me do throw some information here about bloom for women. So let me tell you bloom for women dot com. And they deal specifically with betrayal trauma in if you've heard my podcast before, you know that betrayal Trump is very real. Have some guests coming on in the next month or two to talk a lot about betrayal, trauma, but the symptoms are very similar to PTSD in the people who've designed the bloom for women dot com site and the content. Now I've years and years of research under their belts, and I want to show you that there is absolutely help, and I personally have done a lot of training in the field of betrayal, trauma. And so if you're experiencing the the betrayal of spouse after an affair, an emotional, fair, physical affair. Have you recently discovered that your partner has pornography, diction, please stop by bloom. For women dot com. Use the coupon code virtual couch, all one word for one month's free access to their Evan. Based information and programs an entire community of support designed to help you grow. And he'll again, that's bloom for women dot com. And if you happen to shave anybody part in the world ran into somebody over the weekend who shaves top their feet, and they're really happy to tell me about that because actually had mentioned it on here. Many times. Matter of fact, I always say, if you're shaking your head face legs, arms chest, or the top of your feet toes, anywhere male, female, I would encourage you to check out allies, extracts he legs extracts and all natural organic shave cream scented with essential oils and smells incredible, visit allies, extracts e. l. i. s. dash e x t r dot com and use coupon code virtual counts for twenty five percents off your entire order for their incredible soothing healing shaving green. Okay. So I'm not saying that all of that stuff I was doing before as rambling that was very much the bullet points or content I wanted to get to. But what I was kind of drawn to is I love when I'm going to do a topic. I'll go out there and it's just mentioned me being. I'm pretty good Google in kind of a joke. I think a lot of people are googling, but I found I was looking a little bit more in authentically, and I knew that there's a an author name. Brown and she has written a number of books, and a lot of them are about being vulnerable and about being thin to the things that I preach often. So I knew I could find some good data there. And what I found was actually an article that someone wrote about Brunei Brown and I really liked it. So woman named Madeleine fry, and the article was called five, powerful lessons about authenticity. Everyone needs to hear, and she writes for something called barely MAG dot com, and I'll throw the link on the show notes as well. But back to Brown, some of the books that she's written that are just pretty amazing. And I got the these from her website where she just mentioned a couple of words after the name of the book. But one, the gifts of imperfection where she said, be you the next one daring greatly. Be all in that one. The first one I read and then rising strong. This one was when I read recently, which is fall, get up try again. I love it. And so I'm going to be quote quoting Madeline fry quite a bit here on quoting Burnett Brown. And so I guess if you wanted to quote me quoting. Fry quoting for neighboring. That would be kind of fun, too, but Burnett Brown's work, scored amount fry on shame, authenticity. Invulnerability has been incredible. Since Brown gave her compelling. Ted talk, the power of vulnerability, which I was doing the math. It's now eight or nine years ago. I think eight years ago it's become one of the most viewed TED talks of all time and she's kind of become America's go to guru for as and fry says the universal emotions that no one likes to talk about. Although I believe they're kind of getting more mainstream now and her books that gift of imperfection Brown says that authenticity is the antidote to shame about that. We're talking about, you know there, there's nothing productive about shame. I got podcasts on that guilt, guilt that can be cinem-, ocean kind of a regular motion. Guilt can bring some awareness to us some say, gilts, like, stop sign, but then here comes, it's buddies, shame and shame as that is the part says, hey, PS your horrible person, and you're always going to do these things and you're never gonna get over them and that sort of thing. And to offer. Been. And when I was talking earlier about being my authentic self, when people go into the, you know how bad you blew it. You know, I don't really like you very much. Those sort of things they bring on shame. I've talked to. I can't even tell you how many people just constantly feel shame about when they let people down or that sort of thing. Instead of seeing it as guilt or seeing it as an opportunity to improve. You know, let's look at the data. Why. Maybe somebody is quote letting someone down, and let's see what's underneath that. And we can work with that from a more strength based place, not not a shame based place. So Brown is again, she says, authenticity is the antidote to shame and she defines authenticity as a collection of choices that we have to make every day. It's about the choice to show up and be real that choice to be honest, the choice to let our true selves be seen, and Mel and Frank on to say, shame can debilitate us if we let it fester, but we can also overcome if actions speak louder than words. Then honesty is purest when we express it through what we do. And being this kind of authentic and do a lot more for us than combat shame. And so that's where she came up with these important lessons. He's five important lessons. We should learn about authenticity and shame from Bernie Brown. The first one is no surprise. You must let go of shame to be authentic. So whenever Brown tells people that she study shame, she says that the conversation often gets pretty awkward or even flat out ins because shame such a viscerally, painful emotion in that bis reaction. I mean, it's just a, we have such an immediate reaction. So shame as such, viscerally, painful emotion that no one even wants to talk about it even while it's on our lives profound. And because we have this this deep desire to connect. That's the that's the part where we are afraid to reveal are vulnerable, are Thint selves at the risk of being examined, or as fry, says, found lacking and rejected. Again, it goes back to that if I am open, if I'm a then here will come the shame and then there will people won't want to hang out with. People won't want to be friends with me. A lot of people that have become introverts or isolated or that sort of thing. I mean, they've already kind of made that decision that if people got to know who they were, you know, then they would not like them. So therefore they are not willing to kind of put themselves out there and be offended. And on that note, I mean, that's hard for me to see because I get to work with enough people and there's enough resources out there these days, even the world of online dating or meet up groups or that sort of thing where you know, if you really want to be authentic, you can connect with someone there. There are a lot of people out there that are probably like a lot of things that you do or. But it's hard because if you just kind of put yourself out there and and and you're not being offensive if you're not being true to yourself, then you're gonna end up being around a lot of people that maybe aren't necessarily like that self that you want to be, which is gonna leave you feeling less than so Browns said, we cannot share our selves with others when we see ourselves as flawed and unworthy of connection. And that is big. So that was from a book thought it was just me, but isn't. She said, it's impossible to. Be real when we're shamed of who we are, what we believe. And that's part of this whole struggle with this journey to authentically if you aren't. If you see yourself as flawed and unworthy of connection, you're not gonna put yourself out there. You know, in the episode last week episode, seventy nine had christianson on talking about his managing ten commandments of managing depression. One of the things that he said that I've used so much now as where at one point he said, hey, I'm not broken or I'm not flawed. He said, I'm Nate and and it was funny because I in my head, I was ready. I was kind of queuing up a talking third person joke, but but then it was like, boy, that struck me because you know, you're not flawed, your human, your you, that's who you are right now. Let's deal with that. So you know, we can't see ourselves as flawed. We're working progress. We're gonna figure this thing out so so yet rather than worsening our chances of connecting with others. This is this is the great part fry says that often too. City enables it so again. So when we are thin -tic, it doesn't actually worsen our chances of connecting with others. It makes it better Brown explains in her vulnerability. Ted talk that what true connection requires of us that we let go of who we think we should be in order to be who we are when we choose to believe that we are worthy of love. When we marginalize shame, we become more comfortable expressing authentic selves. That's the time Brown says that's being offensive. That's what is going to increase our chances of connecting with others. That's the part where when I say in that classroom, that I mentioned earlier that I have not much of a memory for remembering scripture stories, but I have a tremendous amount of passion and love for others. And that's me being authentic and guess what typically people come in and want to share that they have a similar experience. There is a person in my congregation that gave a talk once where they opened up about mental health struggles that they had. Man, I went right to that person and said. I am so grateful for you being offended and being vulnerable, and and that led has led to a nice friendship. So when we put ourselves out there when we are being thin, dick, then we are going to feel more true to ourselves and that is we are typically, we are. We're going to increase chances with connecting with others. Others who may be aren't to that point yet where they feel like they can express who they are emotions. So the good news is that we can. You know, we can choose how we wanna work through shame in our lives. So in the book I thought it was just me, but it isn't Brown uses the term. She calls it shame resilience to explain how we can handle feelings of unworthiness. That challenge are often tizzy. She says, recognize shame when we experience it and then move through it and constructive way that allows us to maintain our often Titi and grow from our experiences. So the first point is being again able to recognize it, hey, I'm not broken. I'm not flawed. I'm Tony. And and so just bringing some awareness to recognizing that. Recognizing that is going to be the first step in kind of helping us as Brown says, move through it in a constructive way that allows us to maintain authenticity and grow from experiences. Ain't that leads right into fry says number two, the way to be authentic, being authentic, does not mean bearing all. 'cause I think that was kind of a nice flow here. She said, vulnerability is the source of authenticity, and that's the what Brown explains in her book daring greatly. But being real doesn't mean flaunting the details of private lives necessarily. I don't think that that's what we all we have to do an order to authenticate some people do and and it can really help others. But for others, that doesn't mean that that's the recipe that you have to do. So rather sharing your story with even sometimes a select few. That's that can be wise that's not closed off. Healthy vulnerability recognizes wind share, and even winter remain silent. And this can help you strike the balance fry says between guarding who you are, your core and expressing it. So it's again here comes a cliche, but it's a process to start to recognize it, and then start to look for people that you can. You know, the select few even at time. The you can start to share a little bit more of your vulnerable self. So it you know, it's okay to speak the truth without speaking all of it. And in some cases, this is a mantle and fry said she, she likes to say, hey, I'm having a rough day is a lot better than just saying, I'm doing great. And I know that we I've talked about this before too. There are people that we all run into in our lives that every time you see him doing horrible or I'm always busy. I'm always tired. So I'm not talking about that because is that the person? No, but the person might be today's a good day. I'm feeling it where another day might be. I don't know. Something's some different a little off today instead of the person's always. Great, great. Doing great. So tasteful vulnerability is the foundation. There's that hiccup, sorry, excuse me. Tasteful owner ability is foundation of authenticity. Is it really a hiccup of it's been what thirty minutes? Or is that just like embarrassingly hiding bit of a belch might have been what that was, and I'm not gonna edit that out, tastes vulnerability, foundation of authentic wording fry over sharing often, say even make people seem fair. Take. And so that's the part where you know what I've seen that a timer to where somebody's just going to go big, go all in on just sharing about every every single detail. And sometimes that can project a little bit of this, hey, over share in hopes that you will like that part of me, excuse me, not about, hey, this the authentic me. So I think just kind of being aware of that is is important as well. She goes on to say, number three boundaries support authenticity. Those who have a strong sense of their own identity and the ability to express it always have healthy boundaries Brown says, setting healthy boundaries as simple. It comes down to letting others know what's okay. And what's not if you're uncomfortable with something, tell the person so and YouTube and work towards a solution, letting others have their own way and people pleasing do not make you a kind person. They make you a resentful person. I like that concept to. That's the part where, yeah, letting somebody we go back to that previous example of their talking bad about cats and you love cats, letting others this kind of talk about it and. Then maybe if you're saying, yeah, I don't like either doesn't make you kind makes you resentful that you didn't stand up for yourself or or that you weren't able to kind of bring some awareness to that conversation. We let somebody cross a line that's important to you, then you're not doing either of you favor by staying silent. And I think that's a again, a big part of being authentic Brown uses the acronym big b. I g to explain why is important said we must set boundaries. There's the b. to maintain our integrity and still make the most generous assumptions about others. So there was the big was boundaries. I was integrity, and then the g. was generous, still making generous assumptions about others in this way, we express our selves by sticking to our principles while also being compassionate as possible. I think that's the key one of the things. If you are standing up for your beliefs or yourself, it doesn't mean the f. to scream it yell at, or you know, bring negatively to it. It's just about, you know, your boundaries to maintain your integrity, what's important to you and still make the generous. Assumptions about others of I express my truth and then I have empathy. I express sympathy toward the other person. You know if they were, I don't know if they were attacked by a gang of several hundred cats when they were young and we don't know anything about that. Then maybe having that story level, but more empathy for why they are not big fans of cats. All right. Here's one that I honestly, I thought that I thought that this is something that I came up with, but I heard a long time ago and and I use it a lot of Senate on the podcast, but you know, don't should on somebody else. You should do this. You should do them and Mallon fry as here's number four were all shooting ourselves, Mesa. Okay, authenticity is threatened by two common pitfalls. And those pitfalls are perfectionism in comparison. She quotes Brown by saying, we simply can't speak our truce when we're held hostage by what other people think Brown wrote in the book. I thought it was just me. She said, as we grow up, we filter our experiences through others. So we filter our experience rather sad becomes. Part of our Lynn's and we filter those through others expectations, others beliefs. And so when we learn to desire normalcy over authenticity, we become fake and I, that's kind of a deep. So we, you know, we are just kind of seeing everything is if we're going to be judged by other people's experiences by their expectations. So so when we learn or what she's saying is that when we learned a desire normalcy or meaning that, hey, we just don't really wanna rock the boat instead of being thick. And that's when we become fake in another tedtalk. Listening to shame for neighboring explains that failing to meet the standard of perfection contributes. And in this case, he was talking about women in particular, contributes to women feeling shame. Thus we get trapped in a vicious cycle of feeling shame after missing the perfectionist, Mark, and then maintaining shame because their imperfections make us to afraid to express the authenticity that turn shame away. Break that down, right? So trapped in this vicious cycle of feeling like we're supposed to be perfect. Than feeling shame after missing the Mark of being perfect because no one is going to hit that Mark of being perfect, and then maintaining the shame because these imperfections make us to afraid to express the fact that we know that we can't be perfect that we can't be authentic and the full title of daring greatly Bernie Brown sums up the solution. Well, the full title says, it's daring greatly. Let go of who you think you're supposed to be an embrace who you are. Okay. And then the fifth key that fry says of authenticity is authenticity is key to compassion and the gifts of imperfection Brown says, we can't be compassionate unless Rothen tick being real with people then is not only essential that connection, but also to compassion. You have to be kind yourself first and then to others. She quotes CS Lewis who said friendship is born at the moment when one man says to another what you too. I thought that no one I thought I thought that no one, but myself experienced whatever it was the quote kind of cuts off there, but I love that that what you to, that's. Part where when you feel like you're being thick, that is when someone says, oh my gosh, that's I, I know what you're talking about. I experienced that too. That's what's gonna forge more of a genuine friendship than always feeling like I am being judged by my friends. REM I say the wrong thing by my friends any. That's one of the things where people will say, you know, and it can sound cliche, but if you're gonna express your truth or your city, and then the other person's gonna say, oh, jeez, I can't believe you said that then is that the best kind of a friend is that is that a truly thick friend. So without anticipate these moments, these, what you two moments are impossible authenticity makes way for compassion by expressing trust and allowing us to connect with others over shared experiences. So fry goes on to save, and we begin to live thickly authentically, we recognize are worth. We express vulnerability. We set boundaries and only then can we turn outward and express compassion? So I love it. May she? She summed it up by saying shame may be universal, but rejecting it. That's up to us. So. What do you do from here? And I'm wrapping this up now. I promise. What do you do from here? Just listened to the podcast started to do some self reflection, feeling shame about not feeling like you've been authentic, then bring some awareness to it. Maybe I want to say knock it off, but but that would bring shame. So awareness is the first step. So the first thing you do just bring some awareness of the fact that, okay, maybe I'm not being as because I wanna be and that does lead to shame. This might require an exercise in determining what your internal values are. Then a couple of episodes on acceptance and commitment. There being in particular book called the confidence gap by Russ Harris. And if you read that one, he goes into a lot about an exercise, undetermined your values because your values ultimately need to be in line with what your goals are, and there's a there. There's actually a PDF file out there on the web. It's a confidence gap worksheet that helps you identify your values and I do it with people in session here and it's pretty powerful, but also learn to seek genuine connection seek to truly understand. The people around you, the more genuine, the connections with the people around you are the more likely you're going to feel like you can truly be authentic and do your best to try to remove the thought of thinking that you need to be perfect. You're human and is humans were were flawed. We are from the book the road, less traveled. One of my favorite ones by m Scott peck. Again, he starts off by saying life is difficult. That is one of the great truce what, but once we understand and once we understand we accept that life is difficult than the fact that life is difficult, no longer really matters. It's more of what we do with that fact that does so start to learn how to truly be in the moment, be present, try to become a better listener. When you notice that your mind is starting to drift off somewhere else will be yourself up about it because there's comes the shame, just gently noticed, bring your mind back to the president, the more you do this exercise more natural become and the easier will be to help you regain focus. People know when you're not there at the Tel you as their my job is to stay connected with people in session, but I'm keenly aware of folks who. The moment that I start to kind of talk express anything they to now they're getting antsy their attitude because they want to craft their next response. So learn how to be present. But in all of this will lead to this feeling of authenticity. And that's that is my hope. My prayer for all of you is that you will. You'll just truly start to believe that you can find that authentic you and only just that you can find it that. But by living this authentic life that that you will feel more connected to others that you will develop more deep relationships and friendships and that this will just become a feeling normal feeling of just feeling connected and being you're still going to have the ups and downs the bumps in the road. But boy, they, they are. I feel like they are a lot. There are lot more workable, workable problems when you are truly being on the dick yourself. All right. Hey, thanks for your time today. Folks. I will see you next time on the virtual couch and taking us out as always is wonderful, talented. Florence with its wonderful flying. Out. The day grind. Placed in. Stillman. Pushes things. Two. Exciting news discount. Opportunity. Take. Pushed. Develop this student explode. Understandings. Eggs and hearts. You. She. Streets. Unto. Sees.

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