Day 8 Copy
Does Authenticity Reduce Anxiety And Depression?
Given that mental health is more than the absence of mental disorders, central to these issues are the concepts of ‘authenticity’, ‘being authentic’, and ‘self-esteem’.
Many people still don’t realize the exact meaning of the concept, how it applies to them, and its unique and invaluable benefits.
To begin, it’s important to clarify the difference between authenticity and sincerity.
Authenticity vs Sincerity
Sincerity relates to the expression of your personal experiences (thoughts, emotions, beliefs, needs, wants, or preferences) to others – it’s relational, public, and external. Sincerity has a ‘public’ face, which is manifested in the public domain and is judged by the extent to which the self is represented accurately and honestly to others.
Authenticity, on the other hand, relates to the ownership of your personal experiences – it’s private, internal, and ‘self-referential’. Authenticity doesn’t have a public face, as it’s not enacted in the relational domain or involves the consideration of others.
Being authentic implies acting incongruence, alignment, or consistency with one’s true self. This means being consistent with your inner experiences.
The degree to which such consistency (or lack of) exists has major implications for our mental health and wellbeing. This is because, above all, authenticity provides meaning. The opposite is also true.
Inauthenticity, Lack of Meaning, Depression, and Anxiety
Living inconsistently with your inner experiences is like ‘living a double or secret life, being a pretender or an impostor to yourself by making false claims of identity to yourself. Sooner or later, this lack of authenticity causes dissatisfaction, depression, anxiety, loneliness, and despair.
Choose one of the statements below and look at situations in your life that have been affected due to authenticity that may have caused anxiety and stress.
How can you prevent these situations in the future?
- Authenticity, self-esteem, and assertiveness are individual protective factors of psychological wellbeing.
- Lack of authenticity negatively impacts your mental health and wellbeing.
- Authenticity (being your ‘true self’) and self-esteem derive your true personal power.
- Authenticity requires high levels of self-awareness and living consciously.
- Stress, depression, and anxiety can be prevented to a large degree by building and maintaining authenticity and self-esteem, and being assertive.
- Being assertive preservers and builds your self-esteem.
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