Authenticity is hard to find these days. With the pressures of social media it’s difficult to find ourselves among the white noise of other’s people’s lives and expectations. It is maybe for this reason that being authentic is in vogue as are authentic weddings. Bucking the social trends and stepping out to say “This is who I am” is becoming more popular. Many of us reach a certain age where we’re attending a wedding every other week so when it comes to our own, it’s natural to feel a pressure to match or outdo what has gone before. Not always as an exercise in vanity but, ironically, in an attempt to be different; to separate ourselves from the crowd.
But is that authenticity?
Authenticity by its’ nature is very individual; to be authentic is to genuinely and fully yourself. Only you can know what is and is not authentic for you. In order to find that out, you have to start with exploring what your values are. What is important to you when it comes to your wedding day and your marriage? It takes effort and sometimes some uncomfortable introspection to find out exactly what it is that makes you and your partner tick before you can translate that to your wedding plans. You won’t find it in a magazine or a mood board on Pinterest and you won’t find it talking to a wedding planner or a wedding venue.
This is a journey only you can go on.
So why do we find authenticity so difficult?
If we’re not being authentic, then the chances are we’re working to impress or gain the approval of others. In many ways that’s much easier than finding out what’s important to us because we all naturally err on the side of looking for approval from others. In fact, it can be fun impressing people and it certainly affirming to have people approve of our choices. The trouble is, that if we are only concerned about what people think then we’re sacrificing a part of ourselves in the process. We’re giving the power to be happy and the acceptance of ourselves away to people who may have a completely different value system to our own.
Does that mean you don’t get to have beautiful things or fuss over how things look? Of course you do. You get to do all those things, but if they’re coming from a place of authenticity, you also get to do them on your terms.
I have been a full time professional Wiltshire wedding photographer and videographer since 2004 and have covered over 500 weddings in that time. For more wedding advice posts click here.
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