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Some believe that 2015 is the year of self-love, self-care and the year of the authentic self.

As people dive more and more into personal growth and development, we hear a lot about living an authentic life can help you find your life purpose.

But if you are like me, you may be asking yourself what all of that means and how do I live a more authentic life.

If I’m not being me, than who am I?

The truth is, we all have a version of ourselves that we present to other people.

There’s the professional me.

The daughter me.

The sister me.

The friend me.

But I had to stop to ask myself, who is the real me?

Once I remove those masks and just be me. Not being what I want others to think or believe of me, but the true me down to my core.

It’s not easy to uncover those layers. It’s like pulling back an onion to get to the center of it.

We have created a false sense of safety being what we think others have come to expect of us. As if to be safe means to be happy.

To be authentic and true means to make peace with our personal history, and ourselves, and finally allow ourselves to be free. But it also adds in a sense of vulnerability.

Here are 4 simple ways that I found helped in identifying my true authentic self.

1. Question things.

Be inquisitive of people and things and ask questions. Don’t focus on trying to have the answers all the time. Be inquisitive and learn more about others. It may help you to learn more about yourself.

2. Say yes.

Be open to saying Hell Yes! And Hell No! Do what you want with conviction! Don’t be mediocre and go all in when you want something.

3. Be perceptive.

Pay attention to what you see in others, as that can be a projection of who you truly are.

4. Imagine your childhood self.

Go back to who you were when you were a little child, before your perceptions began to take shape and you felt the need to please other people. Who is that child?

Close your eyes and go there to sit with them and ask them questions. What do they want you to know?

By creating a gap between who we are and who we pretend to be, we open a negative space to allow for uneasiness and dis-ease to appear.

When you begin to shorten that gap, you will start to notice a positive change in your overall wellbeing. That’s how you know you are on the right path.

Because at the end of it all, our goal in this life is to strive to live as joyfully as we can, and how can we truthfully do that, if we being anything less than who we are meant to be.

Guide to Inspired Life