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Authenticity & More Ways To Grow It Part 2

A woman found an eagle’s egg and put it in the nest of a backyard hen. The eaglet hatched with the brood of chicks and grew up with them.

All her life the eagle did what the backyard chickens did, thinking she was a backyard chicken. She scratched the earth for worms and insects. She clucked and cackled. And she would thrash her wings and fly a few feet into the air.

Years passed and the eagle grew very old. One day she saw a magnificent bird far above her in the cloudless sky. It glided in graceful majesty among the powerful wind currents, with scarcely a beat of its strong golden wings.

The old eagle looked up in awe. “Who’s that?” she asked.

“That’s the eagle, the queen of the birds,” said her neighbor. She belongs to the sky. We belong to the earth–we’re chickens.” 

So the eagle lived and died a chicken, for that’s what she thought she was.


LindaWe all have beliefs that keep us from knowing who we really are. To live a life of authenticity requires knowing ourselves well and the courage to make choices that are aligned with that truth. When we begin to scan to see if we are living an authentic life we may become frightened by what we discover. To put the correction in, some changes have to be made. The job we are working in may not suit us. Our house or community may not be right for us. How we’re using our leisure time may not be fulfilling. And some remodeling may need to take place in our family life and partnership.

While change has a component that is exciting, big changes can be frightening at the same time. What is even more terrifying is getting to the end of life, reflecting on our choices only to feel the regret of making choices to please others rather than making choices out of our own interests and values. For years, we may have been attempting to be the good kid conforming to our parents’ expectations. And then as an adult, we continued the pattern by striving to be the good student in college, the good wife, the good husband, the good parent and the good worker at our job. Others could have heavily defined these specifications of goodness.

If we don’t look inside to find out our deepest truth and find the courage to live out of that truth, we are living a life that others have dictated. They may mean well, but they don’t know exactly what will bring us greatest fulfillment. To the degree that we allow others to define our life we will be lacking energy and passion.

Taking back the power we have handed to others restores our freedom and vitality. If you are ready and motivated to take back your power, consider these tasks to restore authenticity:

  1. Examine past experiences to reframe each loss, trauma, and discouraging episode so that we know that we are not defined by our past even if it takes years to do so.
  2. Make a clear demarcation between the choices that have been made in our past to live up to other’s expectations as distinct form the choices we are making now that are true to our real self.
  3. Take ownership of emotional intelligence, common sense, natural talent, and skill-sets in order to trust that we can live a life of authenticity.
  4. Practice risking moving out of our comfort zone to step into the unknown to receive the reward of aliveness and excitement. The successes will motivate us to continue risking thereby growing even more courage.
  5. Congratulate ourselves for those changes that we make. Watch the evidence roll in that we are creating a different life, one that is tailor made to fit us.
  6. When people around us are alarmed by our changes and call us selfish, we can take their feedback as validation that our commitment to authenticity is working, trusting that we will have more to give the people in our life when we are real.
  7. Discover our unique and special gifts to give the world and get busy living our purpose.
  8. Quiet down the clucks of any chickens around us that might dissuade us from our newly found identity that we truly are an eagle.

When we live an authentic life, it is contagious to those around us. Our engagement with life will often inspire the people who are closest to us so that they are motivated to move in that direction as well. When both members of a couple unite in a commitment to support each other to be genuine, each can evolve into the best version of themselves and the relationship will flourish.


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Authenticity & More Ways To Grow It Part 2


Linda Bloom LCSW and Charlie Bloom MSW are considered experts in the field of relationships. They have been married since 1972. They have both been trained as seminar leaders, therapists and relationship counselors and have been working with individuals, couples, and groups since 1975. They have been featured presenters at numerous conferences, universities, and institutions of learning throughout the country and overseas as well. They have appeared on over two hundred radio and TV programs. Linda and Charlie are co-authors of the widely acclaimed books: 101 Things I Wish I Knew When I Got Married: Simple Lessons to Make Love Last (over 100,000 copies sold) Secrets of Great Marriages: Real Truth from Real Couples about Lasting Love, and Happily Ever After...and 39 Other Myths about Love: Breaking Through to the Relationship of Your Dreams. The Blooms are excited to announce the release of their fourth book, That Which Doesn't Kill Us: How One Couple Became Stronger at the Broken Places. They live in Santa Cruz, California, near their two children and three grandchildren. To view our upcoming events and to sign up for our free newsletter, visit our website at:

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APA Reference
Bloom, L. (2018). Authenticity & More Ways To Grow It Part 2. Psych Central. Retrieved on August 14, 2020, from


Last updated: 12 Dec 2018
Statement of review: Psych Central does not review the content that appears in our blog network ( prior to publication. All opinions expressed herein are exclusively those of the author alone, and do not reflect the views of the editorial staff or management of Psych Central. Published on All rights reserved.