9 unexpected behaviors of genuinely authentic people

Genuinely authentic people are true to themselves, even when it might seem as though it would be better for them to play a role.

We’re talking about the people where it’s easy to predict how they’re going to act in any given situation because they always act according to their character.

Even if that just means that you can predict they’ll be unpredictable.

If you’re reading this article, the chances are that you think you or a friend are genuinely authentic, and you’re trying to figure out which signs to look out for to confirm that suspicion.

I’ve got you covered. Let’s take a look.

1) They’re generous

Genuinely authentic people are generous in multiple ways.

Sure, they’re generous with their money and will be happy to buy you a drink if you need one, but more importantly, they’re also generous with their time. If you ask them for their help, they’ll give it to you.

That’s because if a genuinely authentic person wants you in their life, they’ll be one of the best friends you’ll ever have. And they’ll do everything they can to take care of you.

2) They practice gratitude

A lot of people think they practice gratitude, but not many actually do.

And as you can imagine, being genuinely authentic tends to make it much easier for people to practice gratitude because they feel it in their bones.

They’ve become the person they were always meant to be, and so it’s only natural that they’ll be grateful for that.

They also tend to be pretty good at demonstrating their gratitude through their actions. And if you’re the reason why they feel grateful, you can bet that you’ll soon know all about it.

3) They’re open-minded

It’s difficult to become authentic in the first place without making a commitment to becoming open-minded.

That’s because being authentic is all about being true to yourself, and open-mindedness is a pre-requisite for self-discovery.

No one can truly say that they know themselves if they’ve never tried something that takes them outside their comfort zone.

Terry Pratchett famously said that the trouble with having an open mind is that people insist on coming along and trying to put things into it.

But genuinely authentic people will only allow that when it aligns with their values and beliefs.

4) They’re quietly confident

When people are genuinely authentic, they typically have a silent sense of mastery over themselves.

They have the kind of self-confidence that’s difficult to fake, and this comes across in everything they do.

They won’t take unnecessary risks or show off to people, but they will act decisively once they decide to do something.

This one’s interesting because while many of the other things we’re covering are pre-requisites that are needed for people to be authentic in the first place, this confidence comes about as a result of authenticity.

5) They encourage uniqueness

encourage uniqueness 9 unexpected behaviors of genuinely authentic people

Genuinely authentic people tend to be unique, and they’ll encourage that uniqueness in other people.

This makes them great people to be around because they won’t judge or mock you for your choices.

It also makes them relatively easy to spot, because as well as looking out for the authentic people, you can spot the uniqueness amongst their friend group.

This means that if you think of yourself as a unique person (and let’s face it, we all are), you can spot the genuinely authentic people because they’ll be the friends that support you the most.

6) They embrace your boundaries

We all have boundaries, or things that we’re not comfortable with. We have physical boundaries and we have spiritual boundaries.

Our physical boundaries might mean that we don’t like people to stand too close to us or that we’d rather fist bump than shake hands.

Our spiritual boundaries might be that we refuse to spend time with people who are draining and super negative.

When we set these boundaries, we’re also asking people to obey them, but not everyone does. Some people get a kick out of deliberately trying to break them.

But genuinely authentic people understand the importance of boundaries and have more than likely set their own.

They’ll understand your boundaries and will try to make sure that other people in their circle obey them too.

7) They communicate with you directly

Genuinely authentic people know that communication is key to any friendship.

That means that if your friend is genuinely authentic, they’ll take you aside and communicate directly with you if they have any concerns about your friendship or your behavior.

This used to be something that almost everyone did, but it seems to be becoming less common thanks to social networking sites. People call people out first and ask questions later.

But if someone is genuinely authentic, they’ll go out of the way to talk to you directly instead.

8) They’re active listeners

Active listening is a style of listening in which people go out of their way to fully understand the nuances of what the other person is saying to them.

When most of us take part in conversations, we spend the time when the other person is speaking to decide what we’re going to say when it’s our turn.

Active listeners will instead spend that time listening.

Active listeners also tend to ask a lot of open-ended questions, like, “How did that make you feel?”

It’s all about making sure that they fully understand what you’re talking about.

9) They’re not afraid to show their vulnerability

Last but by no means least, genuinely authentic people have a vulnerable side and they’re not afraid to show it.

If I’ve learned anything from watching movies, it’s that everyone has a vulnerability, even if it seems as though they’re indestructible and unassailable. Even Superman was weak to kryptonite.

A lot of people try to hide their vulnerabilities and to pretend that they don’t exist because they’re afraid of people trying to use those vulnerabilities against them.

But genuinely authentic people know that their vulnerabilities are part of what makes them who they are. They’re unafraid of showing their vulnerabilities because it’s an important part of who they are.


Now that you know some of the unexpected behaviors of genuinely authentic people, you can start to look out for them.

Spotting authenticity in other people can be difficult, and so these tell-tale beige flags can help out.

They’re pretty good for generalizations, but the thing about authenticity is that everyone displays it differently.

And of course, if you want to be more authentic yourself, the best way to start is just by being true to yourself. Everything else on this list will follow.

Picture of Dane Cobain

Dane Cobain

Dane Cobain is a published author, freelance writer and (occasional) poet and musician with a passion for language and learning. When he’s not working on his next release, he can be found reading and reviewing books while trying not to be distracted by Wikipedia.

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