How to Find your Authentic Self

df1UuKW7hQjiixS93G9pQbGjU4PAZpBcVmopAYmMXggNothing is original. Steal from anywhere that resonates with inspiration or fuels your imagination. Devour old films, new films, music, books, paintings, photographs, poems, dreams, random conversations, architecture, bridges, street signs, trees, clouds, bodies of water, light and shadows. Select only things to steal from that speak directly to your soul. If you do this, your work (and theft) will be authentic.

Authenticity is invaluable; originality is non-existent. And don’t bother concealing your thievery celebrate it if you feel like it. In any case, always remember what Jean-Luc Godard said: “It’s not where you take things from it’s where you take them to.”   Jim Jarmusch

Finding an authentic voice in the over-saturated, rather noisy yoga world can be difficult these days. What does it even mean to BE authentic? As a friend of mine says, “Your choices are always your own, but it is inspiration that will spark your next move, and more than likely it will come from an external source.”

Could it be that authenticity means aligning with what is in the deepest folds of one’s heart? Alignment and the expression of that vulnerability. Excavating something so deep can take time, a lifetime even, and changes over the course of that time can make what was once authentic seem fickle or silly. Irrelevant, even. The proverbial sparrow tattoo on one’s ribs that once symbolized creativity, freedom, escape? Maybe now, once kids have hit the scene, tethering one to day-to-day realities, and responsibilities, that sparrow seems more like a messenger from another lifetime, a relic from someone else’s adventurous past. But maybe the reminder of this other self, this evidence of growth and change, is the most authentic talisman one can carry.

Our desire to belong and our desire to be unique: these twin drives move us and shape us and frustrate us. So often we may feel as though we are voicing what someone else already has said, but  perhaps that is part of the process of finding one’s authentic self. The great masters began their education by copying the works of others. In replication there is contemplation, and slowly, eventually, there is authenticity, originality. Distillation and refinement to Truth.

Wherever you are on your journey, keep seeking, keep learning, keep trying and testing. You are putting your own mark on whatever it is that you choose to put focus on. Be open to listening, and to asking: Is this me? Is this NOT me at all?

Allowing ourselves to creatively explore all the paths to differentiation: this is authenticity. Because maybe you are speaking what has already been said, but as my favourite children’s author Nancy Tillman says,

For never before in story or rhyme / (not even once upon a time) / has the world ever known a you, my friend, /and it never will, not ever again…

Because maybe it has already been said, but never before by you, in your voice, from your heart.

Let what inspires you from the outside be what ignites you from the inside. It is what the world wants, and it is what will define you… authentically. Listen to what resonates in those deepest folds, and express with wild abandon. This is where originality is born.

natalieNatalie Halt  is one of founders of Gather Yoga. She competed internationally on water skiing’s Pro Tour and World Cup circuits for a decade, sustaining her top performance with a yoga practice that began in 2000. Natalie is now a certified yoga teacher, and the mother of two boys. She lives in South Carolina, USA.

Website: www.gatheryoga.com

Facebook: Gather Yoga 

Twitter: @GatherYoga 

Instagram: @GatherYogaCollective

 

 

The Power of Living Your Truth with Sarah Ezrin

Sarah Ezrin  |  Brentwood Ambassador

There is a bright light within each of us. A shining diamond made up of pure joy and peace. This is our true nature or most authentic self.  Unfortunately many only see glimpses as their lights get dimmed by stress, fatigue, distraction.

Yet nothing obscures one’s innermost brightness more than being on the wrong path and not living your truth.

So how do you discover your dharma? By listening to the silence between the thoughts. This is where intuition and the heart lie.

I grew up in Los Angeles in an entertainment family, so it seemed only logical to go into show business. I worked in publicity and production and while I was great at my jobs, it was extraordinarily stressful. Every day I felt like an imposter, like I was swimming against the tide.

Luckily, my sister was an avid yoga practitioner and suggested I get into a practice. I’d dabbled since college, but never fully committed. As I got deeper into the practice and thus deeper into myself, the discordancy of what I was doing versus who I was became more pronounced.

Through spiritual practice, we learn to quiet limiting beliefs and fear-based thoughts and tune into the heart.  And my heart was becoming clear that my path was helping others.

Like most of us though, I had become complacent. I made okay money, I had a good job.  Insert excuse, after excuse.

The reality was I was scared. Change is frightening and uncomfortable! Especially if the outcome is unknown.

It was not until my mum got diagnosed as having terminal cancer that I truly understood the importance of seizing every moment and gathered the courage to quit my job and follow my dreams.

The instant I made the decision to pursue teaching yoga, things seemed to fall into place.  When you are on the right path, the universe gives you photo-1-2signs and there is an ease.

Now this is not to say things are easy. There is a difference. If life were simple it would be boring! Obstacles are placed on our paths to test our resolve and make it (and us) much stronger.

The Amazonite Mala helps me stay connected to my truth. It is helpful in alleviating fears and doubts and plugging one into deeper intuition.  The green stone is also the color of the heart chakra.

When living from an authentic and connected place you are immediately successful.  Your innermost light shines like a beacon and you attract opportunities and people that reflect that brightness.

Life is short. Take the leap and spend it doing what you love! The universe will support you.

 About Sarah 

Sarah Ezrin, E-RYT-500, is a yoga teacher and writer based out of Los Angles. With a profound love of travel, she runs around the world teaching and doing yoga. For Sarah, the practice not about the tricks or the postures; it is about connecting to one’s center and living from your greatest truth. www.sarahezrinyoga.com