Perhaps you will then gradually, without noticing it, live along some distant day into the answer. — Rainer Maria Rilke, Letters To A Young Poet.

I hinted Friday that this month turned into a delightful adventure. But it certainly did not start out that way!

Initially, I got very excited about having a manifesto and my excitement expanded with the list of manifesto’s that Ali Edward’s team put together. I initially settled on this manifesto and I was feeling very “done and dusted” for the month. And then I tried to recall something… anything… from my selected manifesto and it all that feeling of being done disintegrated. I pulled out the print out of Brené Brown’s Manifesto of the Brave and Brokenhearted but even with diligent reading, I was struggling to retain and, more importantly, recall it if I did not have it right in front of me.

It then occurred to me that only a manifesto that I spend the time to think about, create, and use as a reminder will actually accomplish what a manifesto should. I needed to make it my own and memorize it so that it becomes part of my days.

I started by making two lists… one of I Am things. And one list of I Want To Be things. And first and foremost I reminded myself of the wisdom of Rilke… to live the questions, because I have lots of questions, uncertainties, and so many self-inauthenticities. Yet Rilke’s gentle reminder that if I am living the questions, gradually I will discover that I am the answers, the certainty, and yes… An Authentic Self!

So I present My Authenticity Manifesto:

Or course my I Am list was miles long… so I did some editing. I think this I Am list is important, because so many of those things I did not always use as a way to identify myself. Many of them are things that I worked at for a very long time…but, as Rilke says, I eventually became the answer.

I selected these I Am’s to remind myself that the I Want To Be list is entirely possible… if I just keep going, trying, imagining, doing!

And so I have settled in with my word nicely. Is there work to be done? Absolutely! But I am so excited that I have 10 more months to be with my word.

I am also thankful that Carolyn provides us all a space to share how our word is progressing. I always find so many ideas and inspiration in the OLW community!

See you all back here on Wednesday!


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