Authenticity became an eye roll inducing word in the last couple of years as different industry leaders threw them around like candy at a 4th of July Parade, but it doesn’t make “being Authentic” online any less important. Being authentic only means “living your truth” and understanding who you are, and what parts of yourself you want to portray in the online public platform.
What Authenticity doesn’t mean is not private. You don’t have to share EVERYTHING, but you do have to show up being yourself and not try and pretend to be something you’re not. Being proud of the journey you’re on, instead of pretending to be a super successful or super happy person if that’s not where you’re at right now.
You don’t have to pretend to be this perfect mom that cuts shapes out of her kids sandwiches at lunch and throws beginning of the school year dinner parties complete with school wardrobe fashion show if that’s not your jam. On the flip side, you don’t have to be afraid to share those stories of yourself and your family if that IS what you do and what you love to create.
You love a big fancy Christmas with gobs of presents under your themed decorated tree perfectly wrapped and all before December 1st? Do you boo. Have you gone through a life change or health scare and want to go more minimalistic for the holidays and just invest in experiences with your family instead of gifts? Perfect. No one is right. And no one is wrong. We all have our truths and our own realities, and that is what we should be sharing online. Sharing our own perspectives and journeys and not being afraid to talk about what we love because we see someone else’s post and feel shame for living our own best lives. We’re DONE with that crap.
Being authentic means being yourself, and when we do that with intention, we start attracting the people that love us for who we really are, not who we pretend to be online. Here are some of the amazing things that start happening when you focus on being authentic in how you show up online.
Most of us go through life on robot mode. Our days are made up of a series of habits. Some of these habits we created to make our day easier, and some of them have been passed down to us. When we’re searching for Authenticity in our Social Media Content, this can lead us down a path of self reflection. A path of asking ourselves why we do the things we do, and if we want to change some of the things in our lives. Instead of making big changes as a reaction to our circumstances, when we reflect on if our lifestyle is serving uus, we can be pro-active in creating the best life we can possibly live at this moment. Something as trivial as creating an Instagram post about our New Years Resolutions can cause you to pause and really evaluate what is important to you.
Become more relatable to your audience
I’m sure this has happened to you a ton of times before. Something happens in your life- you get sick, you lose your job, you get divorced, you have a baby and all of a sudden you see people like you everywhere. On Instagram you see birth stories pop up on your feed, you read posts on Facebook about other people getting divorced. You join a Facebook Group about your illness. It seems like it’s easier than ever to find people that have walked in your shoes and understand what it is you’re going through.
This could be YOU. You could be the one who runs the Facebook Group about Thyroid Disease or Fertility Challenges. You could be the one sharing openly about your divorce experience on a YouTube Video, or about your life turning upside down at the birth off your third baby. You could be the person that other people look at and feel less alone. Feel like thank God someone else gets it. I’m not crazy or weak- other people struggle with this too. And it might just give them the motivation they need to look for help or stay inspired and positive.
But you’ll never be that person if you don’t share about your self and your journey in an honest way.
Documenting your journey instead of pretending to be an “expert”
This is both the biggest weakness and the biggest strength people have when they create content. They want to be taken seriously, but they try and front like they have a ton more experience or have been more financially successful than they really are. People are clever, and I promise you, eventually they will find out you don’t have the goods if you can’t do what you say you can.
Instead of pretending like you know everything there is to know about a particualar topic, why not be open and honest and tell people what you’re offering is a work in progress. Your audience will appreciate the transparency and look up to you as someone who is a little ahead of their own capabilities, but not too far ahead that they lose hope of learning from you.
We’re focusing on Authenticity in The Social Club this month, so if you’d like to do a deep dive n in there with us, you can find out more here