In a world full of fast trends and mass media, authenticity continues to burn bright as an enduring and electrifying pillar for most brands.
Think of your favorite designer, brand or even place. Why is that, and how would you describe it? More importantly, do you remember the first time you came across their work or stepped into the lobby? You were probably overwhelmed with a sense of childlike wonder and curiosity. It somehow spoke to you and made you pause. Chances are, you found yourself trying to connect in one way or the other and leaning into the brand itself.
It’s an amazing feeling, isn’t it? What did it lead to? Were you inspired to create something of your own or suddenly had a new sense of direction? Maybe you were encouraged to revisit an interest or expand on your own ideas. It was something that probably stuck with you long after you left the place. You found yourself booking another stay, buying a souvenir or zealously sharing with others.
We always recognize authenticity – and quickly. In a noisy and oversaturated world, it feels more like a pleasant surprise and unexpected oasis especially when it really resonates on a deeper level. As humans, we long for deep connection, and authenticity provides just that. We seek places we feel we belong and gravitate towards others who make us feel seen and heard and in turn, encourages us to be confident in ourselves.
Authenticity is a powerful thing. In fact, it may be the invisible magnetic field that creates communities as a whole. There’s nothing uniform about it either. Have you ever visited New Orleans or Charleston? Did you notice how all of the intricate architectural details and bold colors of the buildings and homes are totally different yet somehow complements the other and gives even more context? There’s no two that are the same but collectively, it all creates a wonderful collage and unique air and recognized identity. Like a painting with multiple shades and lines that create an entire story meant to be expanded on.
Authenticity deserves our attention and is one of the key elements of life itself. It’s the solution we seek and the answer to life’s riddles. To experience a life of contentment, we must connect and be in harmony with ourself.
You may have heard of things like ‘in flow’ and ‘in alignment’. Times when we are going against the grain can feel completely draining and even daunting, but when we are in alignment with our true self, everything can feel so easy and energizing. Being true helps us define our own version of a successful life. By doubting or regulating, we only limit ourself and may achieve success but not fulfillment.
In design and business alike, authenticity is a key component at every level. When collaborating with others, it can be up to the designer to not only have an understanding of who they are but also the ability to recognize it and encourage it in others. Ideas matter, but it can take a lot of courage to bloom especially when something is original.
In the workplace, it’s a leadership skill. It is an open invitation to others to experience a greater sense of fulfillment by discovering their own true sense of self. Full transparency is refreshing and creates not only long-term retention but trust as well. By recognizing and validating others, we establish an anchor in an ever-changing and sometimes chaotic world. We will always seek the places and people who make us feel understood.
Authenticity is a wild thing, but we only get to new places and form true community when we are willing to be brave and pioneer. We must accept not only ourself but others as they are rather than trying to conform or hinder. Authenticity isn’t to be feared or restricted but supported.
So with that, we encourage you to take note of the things that feel like the striking of a match that lights a fire. Visit the places you love most and notice the little things. Browse your favorite designer’s work and be inspired. And then…..take a look at yourself and know all those ideas and things you are passionate about are just as valuable, needed and meant to be shared.
The world is waiting.
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