On Being Authentic

Southwold Suffolk

Authenticity is a collection of choices that we have to make every day. It’s about the choice to show up and be real. The choice to be honest. The choice to let our true selves be seen.

– Bréne Brown

Last year was THE year for self reflection and immense personal growth. I read a lot, Bréne Brown books being a few of many that moved me towards the right direction, and I had professional help too. Through the different resources, I learned so much about myself and by doing so, opened my eyes to understanding more of those around me also.

I heard that you can’t truly love others if you don’t love yourself first. Or, you can’t really understand other people if you don’t understand yourself first. Or, you can’t give others joy if you can’t feel that joy coming from within yourself first.

I chuckled inside each time I read the above, and other things similar to them. I’ve got love, understanding, and joy I said to myself. But I was wrong. Well, not completely, but I wasn’t right.

Southwold Suffolk

Last year I learned to be intimate with myself. To not be afraid to look deep inside and to the past. I saw a sad and angry little girl me but I also saw this strong and smart adult me too. While I am still a work in progress, I mean we can’t truly stop learning about ourselves, right? I am now at the point where I can look in the mirror and say: Hey, I know you! You are strong, always trying your best, brave, smart, hard working and you know what, I love you just the way you are!

It’s been so wonderful to wake up, see the bit of sun coming through the curtains and feel the sweetest tug of joy in my heart. It’s been liberating to be able to watch a simple show with the girls and laugh my head off with them. It’s been lovely to just listen to my husband share his accomplishments and feel truly happy for him. It feels very peaceful to be able to feel the full range of emotions, even the negative ones.

Because true belonging only happens when we present our authentic, imperfect selves to the world, our sense of belonging can never be greater than our level of self-acceptance.

– Bréne Brown

When I was in kindergarten I was bullied. I was kicked, pinched, made fun of, and who knows what else. I had one friend. I always believed that I was bullied because I was different. Because in that school, I was a minority.
I was never bullied again but that one year scarred me. I then became a chameleon when in a group setting. I always felt like I had to be like everybody else so I could be accepted and feel like I belonged.

My husband, unintentionally, taught me to not care what others think. To be a bit braver and to do what I wanted to do. He’s the one who has helped me get this far. I wouldn’t have blogged about crafting or even became a trainer if it wasn’t for him.

I was still though always hard on myself and in a way, a perfectionist. I wasn’t healthily striving. I was working for perfectionism to hide from shame, judgement and blame.

Only after I could see within, accepted my imperfect self, and be kinder to myself that I was able to embrace my vulnerability and Bréne was right to say that

Vulnerability is the birthplace of love, belonging, joy, courage, empathy, and creativity. It is the source of hope, empathy, accountability, and authenticity. If we want greater clarity in our purpose or deeper and more meaningful spiritual lives, vulnerability is the path.

The months of self-exploration helped me find not only my true self but also how I wanted to be heard in real life and on social media. While I have no intention of sharing every single detail about myself or the family, I have every intention to always be authentic. While my photos will have all gone through light or heavy editing, the words that come with them will not. The words are my voice. The voice of another imperfect being who is just trying to live a meaningful life and wants to be accepted as she is.


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By Savitri

A wife, mom, traveler, photographer, geek and lifelong learner.

7 comments

  1. This is an incrediblely thought provoking post Savitri, what an incredible journey you have been on. I’m going to guess the journey isn’t over yet, but it sure has reached an inspirational place. Your first newsletter is gorgeous and the first thing which jumped out at me this morning when I opened my emails…?

  2. Hi Savitri! I wanted to let you know that I love this post and blog! I stumbled upon you on instagram because I follow photosofbritian and visitbritian and you were the featured photo one day. I love your pictures, you really bring England to life for me. I am a stay at home mom from suburban Ohio and I dream of visiting England. Your blog posts resonate with me so much, I am hoping to come out of my shell this year and your blog and instagram are inspiring me to do so. Thanks and have a great day!

    1. Hi Marie! It’s so interesting how people bump into each other! So glad you are here and I hope your dream of visiting England come true! Life is such a blessing. Believe you can do it, have a trusted cheerleader or two and you can be the person you wish to be ?

  3. Savitri, thank you for believing in yourself enough to share this. It resonates with me so much. I joined instagram over the summer as part of my own self-discovery journey. And it has been transformational. I can relate to so much of the discovery journey and stages you describe. I will have to take a look at the books you mentioned also. Am so glad to have come across your blog and instagram and to follow your journey of discovery.

  4. Catching up on blog reading. The photo of the changing houses is so pretty! I bought “Quiet” when I was at Heathrow on layover last year. Still need to read once I finish others. This is a great post, you are able to put in words what I feel at times

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