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Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Authenticity

Years ago I was writing a column on an internet newspaper. My column was about the internet and one was about chat programs and people's actions. I was a daily user of a chat from my hometown newspaper. I lived in Alaska, but my hometown was Corpus Christi, Texas. I made a lot of friends there, and eventually planned to meet everyone when I went home.

I met probably a dozen people. I was stunned. Only one was how she portrayed herself online. Everyone else was remarkably different in person. I used the experience for an article, and I lost a lot of 'friends' when they read that article. In hindsight, I realize the internet is a lot like the first day at a new school. It's a blank slate and you can be anyone that you could possibly want to be. You can create different user names for different situations, and try on new personas. How awesome is that?

As I get older, though. I want authenticity in my life. I don't feel the need to try on different masks because I've really grown to like myself. I think about my different situations... I am the same person at ESL as I am at work. I am the same on girls night as I am other times. Not necessarily the same at home as those other places, but I've always thought certain things should stay at home and that home is where you can fully remove all masks and let your hair down.

When I was trying to market myself as a painter, it was difficult. I was unsure of who I was in that situation and saw it as an opportunity to create myself. It didn't work out very well. If I were trying to market myself today... as an artist, writer, etc. I am sure that I could do it right. I am comfortable in my skin. Comfortable in my abilities. And I have attained at least some level of authenticity.

6 comments:

The Mad Celt said...

"This above all: to thine own self be true, and it must follow, as the night the day, thou canst not then be false to any man."
-William Shakespeare

I really like "I Dream of Fireflies", by the way. Peace and joy.

Geoff Schutt said...

One of the beautiful things about blogging, or communicating anything in this manner, is that we can discover new aspects of ourselves. Sometimes the people we "meet" discover them for us. It's like a new kind of enlightenment, if used properly, and it's authentic, as long as we remain true to ourselves ("and the characters we/you create," says Eleanor, my direction).

Another beautiful post, Robyn, and it's good to see The Mad Celt here this morning as well!

-- Geoff, and Eleanor (of course)

Robynsart said...

Geoff and Dale,

It's great to see both of you here this morning! You're always welcome here.

Robyn

sandy said...

I am not surprised by the misrepresentation you came up against. Unfortunately it seems to be very common. I am thrilled to be right there with you, in what you see is what you get. I dont have the time or energy to put together an elaborate alter-me. I really like who I am, and well, if others dont, then I see it as their loss. Our authentic selves- it's the only way to be. Glad to see we share this in common.

Robynsart said...

Sandy!! I was trying to leave a message on your blog about the 100 day challenge and it would not let me. I am starting on the 11th. How about you?

sandy said...

I need to start too. I will start then on the 11th with you... ok? One of my blog friends simplified it a bit, and I like how she's doing it, so mine may look different, but if it keeps me on track, productive, and moving forward- all the while happy, fulfilled, and at peace- then I'm golden.
I have been meaning to leave you a note too. Your photo's look so much like ones I've taken. It kind freaked me out today ( in a good way) when I saw the tree roots. I have one so similar.
We obviously have similar tastes in scenery.
feel free to email me any time. love the email!
btw, I just finished two letters to other organizations in my community for Indigo Goddess Arts! Thanks for checking in!

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