Some people have it, but most don't. For those who have it, it permeates every area of their life. They look for it in everyone else. Those who don't have it are naturally drawn to it, but they don't know why. It attracts the opposite sex.
What am I talking about?
Just kidding. I'm talking about authenticity. I define authenticity as knowing who you are and never making any effort to appear any other way.
This is an interesting topic to me because it's something I've gotten a handle on recently. I realized that the people who were universally liked and admired, were NEVER the stereotypical "cool people".
They aren't the people who are cold and removed, who act like characters from some TV show, who keep up with the latest trends. That isn't to say that those people aren't liked... but they're generally liked only by similar people.
However, people who have visible quirks, eccentricities, even faults, but make no excuses or apologies for them are liked by EVERYONE.
A great example is Amy, the waitress I wrote about a few posts ago. She's the kind of person who lays it all out on the table from the beginning, and doesn't even consider who her audience is. It's inescapably magnetic.
Authentic people are usually really happy because they don't have the constant struggle of trying to fit into an impossible mold of what they think is cool.
When I think about my friends, I realize that all of them are very authentic. They don't try to be people they aren't... they are who they are and they're happy with that. I think of people I used to be friends with who I grew apart from, and I realize that they're almost all people who weren't authentic.
I read some of a book called "Radical Honesty", recommended to me by my friend Hayden. It's written about a guy named Brad Blanton who NEVER lies. He's the epitome of authenticity. I found the book a bit boring, but the concepts were fascinating. I haven't fully integrated it (yet?) because at the extreme end you're supposed to always say whats on your mind, no matter what it is.
I don't think that's a terrible idea. I think back and can't think of a single thing I've been told that I wish I wasn't told. Still, it does call for saying some pretty insulting things.
Pickup is an interesting journey to authenticity. I believe that anyone who follows it through will become extremely authentic. If there's a process that makes you take a very honest look at yourself but also realize that people like you for who you are, it's pickup.
At the same time, beginners or even people in intermediate stages of pickup are usually VERY inauthentic. They're the guys who try to "be alpha" all the time. Anyone in pickup knows exactly who I'm talking about.
The cool thing about authenticity is that it does a lot for you. It makes you more attractive. People want to do business with you because they know you're not going to screw them over. It makes it easy to be your friend.
Then again, so does being lefthanded.