10 Tiny Signs Your Authentic Self Has Taken Over

You're becoming the best version of you.

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Pinch me, please. Is this me? A few years ago I thought people who get married and have children are crazy. I didn’t believe in marriage or real love. I was quite messed up and had no idea how bad it was. All the layers of social conditioning, fears, and limiting beliefs held me back until I started to shed them off one by one. Healing is a process. But I can’t believe I am sitting on this beautiful beach with my husband and my precious little boy. My heart was never as full. When I look at Levi I feel like a 14-year-old crazy-in-love teenager. There are no words but that’s the closest.


Change from within is possible. It takes work and determination but it’s worth it. I can’t imagine where I would be if I had not taken care of my fears and limiting beliefs. Today I can see the huge change I went through and I’m incredibly grateful I did the inner work. Or I wouldn’t be sitting here today. Mindfulness is a journey; we often don't realize how far we have come until we hit some major milestones.

RELATED: 5 Simple Ways To Be A More Authentic Person Every Day

Here are 10 tiny signs your authentic self has taken over:

1. Saying ‘no’ comes easier. 

Until my thirties, I had never said "No!" to anybody. I rather didn’t show up, had tons of excuses, or the worst — I would deny myself what I truly wanted instead of having the courage to say "No!." Living like this will break your soul into a million pieces (or more). That’s what happened to me without even noticing until I was lost. The more I shed all the layers of conditioning the more I could say: "No, that's not what I want." First, it was for small things usually to strangers, but later I could even say "no" to the people I was trained to say "yes" since I was born — my family.


Standing up for yourself, your values and your beliefs will transform your life. Everything changed for me — it means you know you are worthy and loved. First, people will protest because they don’t want you to change. Their ego wants you to behave exactly how you did in the past. (The ego hates change.) Eventually, they will fall in line and accept and life moves on. You will wonder why you have suffered so much in the past if this can be so easy.



2. You cultivate healthy connections. 

The human mind is incredible. My 17-month-old toddler can say "Thank you!" in 6 languages just because he is exposed to an international environment. Whatever and whoever you surround yourself with, your mind will suck it up like a sponge. Your authentic self automatically feels drawn to people who also live from authenticity. Out of a sudden, we recognize the suffering in other people and how this manifests in behavior patterns we don’t want for ourselves. With this new insight, your authentic self curates its circle wisely.

3. You rest more. 

Give the world the best of you not what’s left of you. As a working mom, getting some rest or taking time for self-care is the hardest. But I know if my cup is empty it’s no good for anyone. I’m less creative, less fun, less patient, more reactive, more tired, more in my head or on my phone. Being exhausted makes healing impossible. To be present you need to take care of yourself. The more you are living in alignment the more space you’ll find in your calendar.


RELATED: 10 Ways To Be Truly Authentic, According To A Psychologist

4. You are kinder toward others.

When your wounds are healed you are a source of love, compassion, and kindness. With every step forward, you are expanding your compassion to a wider circle — until one day you care for all living beings. It’s easier for you to understand that all humans go through the same joy and suffering. As Thich Nhat Hanh says: "Compassion and forgiveness are possible once we can see the suffering of those who’ve inflicted suffering on us." The more inner peace you feel, the more compassion you’ll have to offer.

5. You judge less.   

This week on the beach we accidentally sat next to a weekly meet-up of fruitarians. Fruitarians are a group of people who only eat fruits and nothing else. They invited us to join and listen in. Living according to a fruitarian diet seems extreme according to our belief system and social conditioning. Therefore the mind immediately rings an alarm and starts judging. It can’t handle when things are too far away from what we know. "This can’t be! They are starving. This sounds stupid! How do they survive?" I bet you have similar thoughts while reading this.

Once your authentic self is in the driver's seat you’ll be able to be more neutral to different points of view without having to agree. You don’t feel agitated by differences. You feel neutral.




6. You say less. 

Let’s continue with the example above. An unconscious mind needs to be right. It can’t handle people or opinions which are too different so it tries to justify and convince the other people that they are wrong. As Yung Pueblo writes "…the urge to speak is ego-driven." This process happens unconsciously and leads to a lot of talking without trying to understand the other side. The ego has to be right — that’s the only way.

Instead of trying to convince the people on a fruitarian diet to change back to a diet that conforms more to what I think is normal, we listened and asked questions. Your authentic self talks to gain more understanding the ego talks to confirm it’s smarter or better than others.

7. You know what you want. 

Living in the fog makes you blind and that shows in different ways. One is lacking direction in life. I have been there, too. When the fog was so thick I had no idea what I wanted to do with my life or what would make me happy apart from shopping. The more you create your authentic self and act like it the clearer your vision becomes. The more progress you make on your healing journey the more you know what is for you and what isn’t.


RELATED: Why Knowing Exactly What You Want In Life Isn't A Bad Thing

8. You do what it takes. 

Taking action is hard. If it were easy the number of people who struggle with depression wouldn’t be skyrocketing. Twenty-nine percent of Americans face or have faced depression at some point in their life and 17.8% are currently treated for depression. Wow! More often you do what it takes to prioritize your mental health. You do what it takes to work through the tough stuff even if you would rather switch on Netflix or scroll on Instagram. You are doing the work and it shows!

9. Your energy is like a boomerang. 

That’s a simple law. If you lash out the other person will hit your anger right back at you. If you respond with kindness and vulnerability, 80% of the time you’ll get the same energy back. It’s like a boomerang your energy comes right back especially if it hits an unconscious person. Being triggered and reacting with anger is a self-defensive mechanism and almost always comes from a place of hurt. Imagine anger like an armor to protect yourself from further pain. When you are present your authentic self is in the driver's seat. It overrides your instincts and responds with intention.


10. You take responsibility for your inner world.

Once you take ownership of your inner world everything changes. It’s not the other people anymore that make you miserable — you know your healing journey is your responsibility. You shape the life you want and don’t let your situation change you. As Janine Ripper says: "Authenticity is the courage to be yourself." Your authentic self knows it can only heal itself and access joy from within.

RELATED: How To Show Up As Your True Self In Every Situation

Karo Wanner is a writer and author of the Mindful Monday newsletter — a weekly newsletter to help readers become more mindful and cultivate peace of mind.