What Authenticity Means To Brittanny

1. Why does authenticity matter to you?

How can we live a whole life without being authentic? Authenticity matters because we are living in a world of comparison. Everyone wants to be like everyone else. To me, authenticity means showing up as your true self in spite of the people surrounding you, expecting you it to be a certain way. It means following the beat of your own drum. If that aligns with the population at large, that’s fine, because you’ve decided that’s what’s best for your lifestyle. So many people think that they have to do what’s expected of them because that’s what someone else in their life did too. Just because your mother went to one college or your sister loves working in corporate, does not mean that path works for you as well.

I live authentically by standing up for myself, and not backing down when other people are trying to push their belief systems on me. I choose not to waste precious time on bullshit. I see too many people around me worried about other people’s opinions, and that’s such a waste of energy.

Authenticity matters because it seems like everyone is so afraid of being themselves when who they uniquely are is the thing that will set them apart. It saddens me that people would rather just fit in and be miserable then live their lives authentically and be happy.

2. Was there a defining moment in your life that cemented the meaning of authenticity for you?

I moved back from living in a different state and getting out of an abusive relationship when I decided that I was going to live life for me. It did not happen automatically, but it sent me on a path of taking stock of the choices that I was continuing to make and ask myself if it was serving me. I was dating people who did not have my best interest in mind or even care to be around me. It made me realize that I am not living life for me. I took time off from dating, and that made me get to know myself and what I like and don’t like. Because of that, I am now in a relationship with someone who loves me just as I am and would never want to see me trying to be anyone else but me.

3. Influencer/brand you follow that takes authenticity to a whole new level?

I love @mynameisjessamyn Instagram. Jessamyn Stanley is a pro-Black, fat-positive, sex-positive, weed-positive yoga instructor who I’ve recently seen is presenting herself more authentically online. She talks about her romantic relationships that don’t follow the status quo. She’ll smoke weed before a yoga flow. She’s weeding out (no pun intended) the people who aren’t going to like her lifestyle and deepening her relationship with her followers who relate to her. It’s also showing other people that they can be open about topics that are typically not spoken about in public. She’s choosing to live life publically and authentically, and she’s a big inspiration for me.