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How to be yourself

In this article, you’ll learn how to be authentic. In being authentic, you’ll learn how to be yourself.

Ed Latimore
Ed Latimore
Writer, retired boxer, self-improvement enthusiast

Everyone wants to be their true self, but few have the self-confidence to do so.

We want people to think that we’re the same person in all social situations and that who we present ourselves to be on social media is the same person we are in real life. We want to believe that “just be yourself” is actually good advice, but we still feel like we’re susceptible to external influences.

If this sounds like a person you want to be like but you currently aren’t, then keep reading so you can learn how to:

  • Be a better person
  • Be your authentic self
  • Live with a sense of purpose
  • Get rid of negative thoughts about who you are that ruin your self-esteem
  • Stand up for yourself
  • Stop being pushed around
  • Stop giving a fuck about who likes you
  • Start to love yourself

If you can do all of these things, then you are well on your way to living your way of being your most authentic self.

Being authentic means you’ll stop seeking approval in your everyday life. When you stop seeking approval, you increase your well-being and it actually becomes possible to just be yourself.

When you finally learn how to be yourself, you’ll live in a constant of realness. Everyone will like you, even though you aren’t even be trying to get them to do so. This is the power of authenticity, and it’s the only way to live.

This article gives you the step-by-step guide to get out of your comfort zone, get in touch with your real self, and get the most out of life.

1) Don’t try to make people like you

The hardest thing for many people to do is to be selfish. When you start caring more about yourself and stop being a people pleaser, it’s amazing how many negative and toxic people leave your life.

The number one rule of being yourself: Never try to make people like you.

In fact, it doesn’t matter if people like you or not.

Be your best self and you’ll attract the best people to you. This is the power of authenticity.

I’m not telling you to be an asshole, a slob, or to “just be yourself.” I’m telling you to make your own interests and goals the motivation for your actions.

Be selfish, don’t harm innocents, and leave the world a better place than you found it. It’s impossible to go wrong this way.

Don’t kiss ass, play dumb, or pretend to like something or be something you aren’t just for approval. On the flip side, don’t rebel, reject, or cast off something just to be different.

Photo of Ed Latimore with a snake around his neck
Be yourself and have fun

If you like something, cool. If you don’t like something, that’s cool too. It doesn’t matter how many people rock with you because you’re the only one who has to live your life.

Don’t like shit just to fit in or hate stuff just because everyone else doesn’t.

If you can just live true to your desires, as long as they don’t harm the innocent, you will also be a likable and authentic person.

2) Focus on self-improvement and live life on your own terms

When you live true to yourself, it’s impossible to be anything but yourself.

You can’t change who you are and what you like, so don’t even waste energy trying. Simply control and mitigate the worst parts of you. This will ensure that you act appropriately in social situations and stay out of jail.

When you live like this, you’ll live with a distinct zeal and gusto that’s impossible to fake. Even if people don’t care about what you do, you’ll talk about it in such a way that they can’t help but be interested. A lot of the time, your enthusiasm about the topic will joyfully infect the other person.

When people are interested in your life, you become interesting.

When you become interesting, it’s easy to just be yourself.

When you are easily being yourself, it’s easy to be likable.

If you aren’t excited to live, why should people be excited to be around you? We’re drawn to people who live life. We tolerate those content to simply survive.

You don’t try to be likable. You don’t try to be authentic.

You just be yourself and no one else.

Being likable and being yourself
When you live authentically, you can always have fun.

Likability and charisma are the outcomes.

Authenticity and passionate living are the processes.

Outcomes are impossible to control.

Living passionately, in pursuit of a worthwhile goal, is the only part of the process that we can control.

3) Don’t worry what others think

Great processes are more likely to produce great outcomes.

Try-hards focus on the outcome, repelling people in the process. Authentic people focus on the process, which results in more attractive outcomes. The natural result is that this makes people like them more.

Being focused on the process makes you likable because you don’t care about being likable. Being focused on the outcome makes you disingenuous because you only care what people think of you.

You’ll “fake it ‘til you make it” but the only thing you’ll “make” is other people question if you’re real or fake.

This is why political correctness is such a drag.

It focuses on not offending other people instead of authentic expression.

It focuses on how people interpret your words instead of the content of the conversation.

Rather than express yourself accurately and honestly, it makes you worry too much about if people don’t like what you say.

It’s impossible to be politically correct and authentic.

This is why women like bad boys and assholes can be lovable. True bad boys don’t give a damn about how the woman feels. Bad boys act in their own best interest first.

They don’t intentionally drop “negs”.

(Read: “How To Become An Attractive Man”)

They live passionately, and people who live passionately are attractive.

Conversely, being offensive for its own sake is also repulsive. People can feel when something is an act or a defense mechanism. This is also why sarcasm is repulsive to anyone with an authentically strong personality.

Real not only recognizes real, but it also recognizes and repels fake.

Authenticity is so powerful because it is, by definition, impossible to fake.

A person must grow into the best version of themselves, but not change to appease the masses. How does one become their best self but not change? What allows a person to grow authentically?

4) Do what you love no matter what

Focus on whatever sparks your passion.

Why it lights your fire is irrelevant. All that matters is that it does no harm.

Ideally, your passions improve you and your environment. If you aren’t interested in making the world a better place, then the next best thing you can do is not make things worse.

It’s easy to become your best self when what you pursue aligns with your passion.

The moment you begin to live for another’s desires is the moment you lose authenticity. This is the moment when many of us, in an attempt to be cooler and fit in, lose the very thing that gives us our edge.

I always tell people that I’m a more interesting and engaging person [since I stopped drinking](B07LFX335T).

I get to live life on my own terms instead of the way most people expect me to. I can interact with people who drink and those who don’t because I’m always myself, engaged in life, and having fun.

(Read: “How To Have Fun And Socialize Sober”)

Inauthentic people are products of their environment. I stopped becoming a product of my environment, and instead, learned how to make my environment a product of myself.

5) Embrace polarity

A sure sign that you are living an authentic life is polarity.

People will rally against you or alongside you, but you’ll no longer be able to exist in the fog of the masses.

Whether they love or hate you, they will be envious of you because you “go against the grain”, stand for what you believe in, and meet life on your own terms.

If you live this way now, you may not appreciate how much courage it takes to live outside the box, take risks, and essentially buck the system that wants us all to think the same.

If you want to go against the grain, I know that it may look scary. I know that it seems hard.

But you have to remember that “the grain” is nothing more than an illusion that is supported by your fears.

It’s the plan that your culture and society has had for you since your birth. It’s the one that you’re expected to follow without question. When you start to break free and do something different, there will be a reaction.

NPCs don't want you to be likable, authentic, or take risks.
The goal is to make you think and act just like everyone else. Resist.

If you live an authentic life where you’re truly yourself, then you’ll have admirers. But you’ll also have haters. These haters will be the people who are too afraid to take risks. Since they won’t take risks themselves, they are jealous of the ones who do.

Prepare yourself for this, but remember that these people are just paper tigers.

They’re grass-eating lions.

Their bark is worse than their bite and at the end of the day, living an authentic life as your most likable self grants you a level of freedom that makes you immune to their whines.

If you don’t have the balls to risk being hated, you don’t have the strength to receive love. If you can’t endure the consequences of living authentically, you don’t deserve the rewards that come with it either.

The best and worst things in life walk side by side. By avoiding one, you automatically forfeit the other. This is the life of the inauthentic.

The rest is up to you…

Get Your Life Together With The Essays of Power

I don’t know you, but I know you.

I know that you’re tired of feeling weak, being a victim, and having no control over the direction of your life.

I know you because I was once you.

I used to be stuck on the hedonistic treadmill of mediocrity. Always drunk, always broke, and always looking for the next piece of cheap entertainment and distraction.

Then one day, I changed my entire life around.

I took responsibility for my personal development and started living the best life I possibly could. I learned how to:

  • Live with purpose
  • Think with clarity
  • Face the my demons
  • Fix my finances

Unlike a lot of other motivational gurus, I’ve been to the bottom and I clawed my way back out. It wasn’t easy and I wasn’t sure if I’d just become another statistic along the way, but I think I have made tremendous progress.

I learned the hard way, but I can break it down so you can learn it the easy way…

Get The Mind And Fist Essays Of Power
Ed Latimore
About the author

Ed Latimore

I’m a writer, competitive chess player, Army veteran, physicist, and former professional heavyweight boxer. My work focuses on self-development, realizing your potential, and sobriety—speaking from personal experience, having overcome both poverty and addiction.

Follow me on Twitter.