Do you find yourself talking about a matter perhaps quite close to you and somehow people don’t seem to quite understand? You might for example be talking and there’s a non-reaction in your audience, like there’s no energy in the room, and people looked switched off, and perhaps bored and distracted. It’s likely that they’re disengaged. So how do you get them so they’re more connected to you and what you’re saying?
Today people need to get from you how it really is. Which sounds good, except that often you don’t know how to convey it, at least not in a way that people really get it. This can be about moving from your facade to how it really feels.
Talking from your facade can be quite easy. It might be habitual. Your facade might be what you present to the world, what you think works with others, behind which you can operate quite safely. Jung called it the “persona”. That way you can keep people from getting uncomfortably close, especially those that haven’t passed the entry test yet.
A clue can be in that you talk “about” something. You might use words like “it is” rather than “I think” or “I feel”. “It” is further away, at the level of the facade. It’s not that you’re being false necessarily, and then you might be, but just that you’re keeping it “out there”, not close in “here”. “Aboutism” is how we talk about what’s going on in a detached, not so emotional way, as if we’re describing something that tells the listener “about” the matter, without bringing them in close to how you really feel about it, what it does for you, and how really plugs into your emotions.
To move to how it really feels is to make it more personal, like what lights you up about it, what it has to do with your life and with your passions, and how it really matters to you in some way. People then feel they can connect with you, resonate with you, feel like they are more at one with you, like it could be their journey too but it’s your’s that you are talking about.
Some people I think seemingly do this a lot, although even this apparent self-disclosure, tears, warts and all cannot necessarily take you close to them. It’s about how you authentically feel. People can put on a good emotional act. One test is how you feel around them.
Thus, to be able to let people in so that they get you authentically, you may well need to do your own journey to get what your authentic self really is. People often don’t know that and you may not know that either! Also you may need to cross the self confidence and self belief threshold about speaking about yourself in front of others. That can involve letting go of the fear and feeling good about you around others. The two can often go together. Then when you’re clear about that, you can trust to let go and be yourself with others, and truly bring people into your world and know that space truly for maybe the first time.
Knowing who you really are, and being yourself, also involves letting others in. Then it comes full circle and we then really know ourselves completely. For it is also through others that we can come to know ourselves. It’s a paradox.
This is why the journey to being authentic is not just about helping others to really get you, but also to finally help you to fully get you.