Authenticity in adoption should always be our main focus on every side of the triad. Honest communication is vital to building trustworthy relationships. As you adventure on the road of adoption, keep these ten steps in mind for being a more authentic person; not only as a member of the adoption community but as an individual.
10 Steps to Building Authenticity in Adoption
1- BE HONEST
Don’t over promise with the peer pressure of urgency. Don’t commit to a level of openness that you can’t stick within the long run. Be honest in your daily work. Honest intentions. Honest conversations. Honest energy. Honest everything!
2- BE CLEAR
Be clear about what you want—what you don’t want, what you offer, what you don’t offer.
The biggest communication problem is we do not listen to understand. We listen to reply.
How true is this in every relationship we have; not just within the adoption triad but as parents, friends or spouse?
4- SHOW EMPATHY
I’m in it with you. I’m not here to fix you. I’m not here to feel it for you. I’m here to feel with you and let you know you’re not alone.
5- DON’T MAKE ASSUMPTIONS
If I offered you $100,000 to jump out of a plane without a parachute, would you do it?
But what if I told you the plane was on the ground?
Know all of the facts before you respond or react.
6- ALLOW CONNECTION
Let there be a connection to who you are communicating with. It is okay to show that you care and are interested in them and what they are saying. We all need to learn to be more human. Don’t avoid eye contact. Don’t hide behind your phones. Smile. Ask people questions. Listen.
7- MATCH YOUR WORDS TO YOUR ACTIONS
This one is important to me. Do as you say you will do!
8- BE OPEN
Be open to change. Be open to growth. Be open to new beliefs. Be open and aware with your inner self.
Those who bring sunshine to the lives of others cannot keep it from themselves. Show happiness to those around you. Share your light.
10- BE BRAVE
Be brave enough to show the real you. Don’t play the part of who you think you should be or what people are expecting you to be. Be who you are, authentically!
Show empathy to those around you, communicate authentically and honestly— as an adoptive parent, birth parent or adoption professional. There is nothing more refreshing than being around others who aren’t afraid to be themselves!