Transparency, Authenticity and Accountability

Thanks to the lovely and gracious Lori Gosselin over at Life, for instance for hosting me last Friday on the porch for her “Life as a Blogger” series. Every week, she features a guest post with a one word descriptive that represents their approach to blogging. I was fortunate to write “The Authentic Life of a Blogger” and very much enjoyed the discussion that followed.

With each comment the readers left, my own perspective of living an authentic life was expanded so I wanted to share some of the highlights of the experience with you!

What is the difference between transparency and authenticity?

Authenticity Transparency Accountability QuoteAccording to moi, “Authenticity requires a certain measure of vulnerability, transparency, and integrity.” To me, transparency is the willingness to let others see in, to see you. It ought to be the absence of walls or even of a facade. Yet, I wonder if it’s possible to be transparent without being authentic?

I understand there is a difference between authentic and transparent, and sometimes under the guise of transparency, people share “truth” which is really veiled criticism.  I feel authentic is genuine and transparency is a depth to that genuineness.  Joy Hollin, Facets of Joy

I’m inclined to agree with Joy on this one. At times my initial response may not be an accurate reflection of my most authentic self, and yet it is available in that very moment. “It’s much easier to spout off on any topic under the guise of ‘keeping it real’ than it is to dig a little bit deeper to access perspective from your inner wisdom.” I tend to pause and consider if my reaction is representative, or if it is reactive.

Carole Remy expressed this process with her comment, “We may think our first response is our most authentic, but perhaps what pops up first is conditioning, and what we realize later, pondering, is our true voice.”

And then there’s accountability…

In my quest to be both authentic and transparent, through reactions and responses, moments of pondering and clarity – I am accountable for my life, as are you.

So, who really knows if you are presenting your authentic self transparently? 

Yvonne Root shared an analogy that has brought me a sense of measurable accountability (if only in theory, as I continue to think about its application):

…when a glass is full and it is bumped what splashes out is what it is full of. Knowing that I will be bumped many times in life, it is important to me to try to keep the “glass” that is me filled with kindness, thoughtfulness, eagerness, joy, cheerfulness and so on.

Seems to me, it is when life bumps into us that we and others learn what has been inside the “glass.”

  • What splashes out of your glass when you get bumped?
  • Are you able to maintain your center?
  • Is your reaction representative of who you really are or does conditioning play a role?

I look forward to a discussion on authenticity, transparency and accountability! Share your thoughts below.  

With mucho a latte of love and respect,

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