Finding Your Gifts...
What does it mean to live an authentic life?
Most people would likely say it is simply staying true to who you are. I would agree—to a point. I would say it is much deeper than just staying true to your beliefs.
For me, living an authentic life is the process of finding the gift you were given, aligning it with your purpose in life—as well as your beliefs, principles, and values—and then living that gift and sharing it with others.
What do I mean by that? I truly believe that each one of us has been given a gift to offer this world. Some people’s gift may be visible for the entire world to see, such as:
· Meryl Streep, a phenomenal actress of our time, who uses her gift to create characters that make us laugh and cry, and open our eyes and hearts to the challenges faced by others; or
· JK Rowling, the best-selling author of our time, who uses her gift to provide children (and adults) with an understanding of life and death, and to teach the importance of faith and hope
A person doesn’t have to be on the world stage for his or her gift to shine. You likely know people within your circle who live authentically by sharing their unique skills: the cousin who teaches music to students, the hairdresser who knows exactly what cut and color best fits you, or the friend who is a gourmet chef and shares his creations. They are all using their gifts—living them and sharing them with those they meet.
At times, our gifts may be hidden. We may be unable to see them, may intentionally lock them away because of past trauma or pain, or maybe they’ve just never been given a chance to shine. There’s no better example of the latter than Susan Boyle, the shy, 47-year-old woman from England who won the hearts of fans everywhere when she sang on Britain’s Got Talent. Susan knew she had a gift and all she wanted to do was share it with the world. Today she is an international superstar. If you’ve never heard of Susan or seen her remarkable performance, go here. I bet you’ll be cheering by the end as I was.
My story is certainly not as well-known as Susan’s, but it is similar. In 1999, I was desperately searching for the meaning to my life. I knew that I had more to offer the world, but I didn’t know how to find my path. That’s when I picked up Bill Cohen’s book, Life Mapping. It gave me the answers I was seeking and helped me identify my gift. Today, with Bill’s support and through the Life Mapping Institute I founded, I help others uncover their gifts, map out their desired goals, and, most importantly, shift from dreaming to living authentic lives.
In the next blog, I’ll share tips for unlocking your gift.
NEXT WEEK: 3 Tips for Finding Your Gift…