Being yourself at work

Do you feel like you’re your true self at work? When you start a new job, it’s understandable to be a little cautious about showing everyone the real you. When do you stop pretending to be someone you’re not, though? If you’ve built up an image of who you are that isn’t genuine, how do you bring the real you out? If you don’t find a way to do it, it could have a negative impact on your work life.

It’s important to connect

When there are aspects of your life that you strive to keep hidden, people can tell you’re hiding something. Even if they don’t know what you’re keeping secret, your behavior gives away that you don’t feel comfortable being honest. You’re stiffer and less approachable because you’re afraid that the more you say, the more you’ll give away.

This can affect your relationship with both colleagues and clients. Regarding the latter, people are less likely to do business with you if they don’t feel there’s a connection there. By shedding your fear of people seeing the real you, it’s more likely that you’ll be visibly comfortable talking to others.

Progress needs to happen

Even when your work is of a high standard, people will still pick up on your inability to connect. If you ever want to be promoted to a managerial position, people need to feel they understand who you are and what you stand for. They can’t do that if you’re not honest with them.

If you’re in some position of power, you won’t set a good example by lying about who you are. Only by being open and honest can you show your employees that the workplace is a safe place for them to be. If they sense you’re not hiding anything from them, they’re more likely to follow your orders and respect you, which can only pay off in the long run.

Find the right job

A job where you can’t be your true self is one that’s not for you. We often make compromises when looking for work, usually because we need the money and can’t afford to be picky. However, there’s a difference between doing a job you’re indifferent about because it pays well, and having to fake who you are every day.

It’s important to be the real you sooner rather than later, because you’ll know if you’re in the right job or not. You don’t want to put in a lot of time and effort somewhere you hate only to leave a year later. If the company isn’t right for you, it’s best to get out as quickly as possible. Life is too short to waste it being miserable.

Happiness is key

A lot of people hate going to work. Even the ones who enjoy their job usually don’t like something about it. It’s natural not to enjoy going to work every day, especially when there are other things you could be doing during that time. While it’s hard to find the perfect job, it’s not impossible to make your workday more enjoyable. You can do this by being yourself.

If you’re afraid of being your authentic self at work, you’re going to be slightly on edge all the time. Every conversation you have will make you nervous. You’ll dread those long hours every time you leave home in the morning and spend your evenings miserable that you have to go through it all again tomorrow. That can all change once you allow yourself to be honest. You’ll feel happier, be more productive, and ultimately enjoy life that little bit more. Things are never really as bad as you worry they’ll be.

It’s hard not to hide behind a mask sometimes. We want people to like us, and we worry too much that our bad qualities will get in the way of that. The best companies are the ones who accept you for who you are, though – warts and all.