Ah…here it comes again. Another Un-Seeing Exercise. There’s THAT question: Who am I to be so bold?
The story you tell yourself about what you “cannot” do can hurt you your entire life. This question, in particular, can tie you up in all kinds of knots and keep you stuck in suck.
WHY BOLD? WHAT IS BOLD?
“Lemme tell ya, cookie,” as an old, rasty rascal of a friend used to say, “it’s supposed to be bold. What are ya? Some kinda snail?”
Jan (Arny) Messersmith published that sky-diving image in the header of this post in his Flickr stream in 2010. He tells the backstory in a long rumination in his image notes. He also includes one of the best definitions of “bold” I’ve ever seen.
He says, “Boldness is the exercise of one’s beliefs accompanied by a certainty that positive and well-considered actions will produce desirable outcomes.” He continues, “Timidity and fear are not compatible with confidence and trust.” It’s a truth, that.
This INBOUND Bold Talk, “From Suit to Seal” was published on YouTube by HubSpot in 2015. It features Phil Black who hung up his suit as a Goldman-Sach minion to become, of all things, a Navy Seal.
“Be bold,” Black says at the end of his talk. Bold is the first step to following your dream.
TAKING THAT FIRST STEP
How do you get to bold? Some counterpoint questions might help. How about these?
- When you are 80, are you going to regret that you did not take action and believe in yourself because you were scared?
- What message will you give your kids and your grandkids? How are you going to authentically encourage them to follow their dreams when you stop yourself from following your own?
The saddest comment I have ever overheard was one from an elderly grandmother telling her grandson, “Go do your dream, bebe. Me, I too old for dream now. I can only wish.”
Another take on this is the advice in this spoken poem, “Everybody Dies But Not Everybody Lives” in this YouTube video by Richard Williams, better-known as American rapper and spoken word artist Prince Ea.
Prince Ea published the video in 2016. It was a collaboration between the artist, who calls himself a “Futurist,” and Neste, a Finnish oil refinery company that, besides producing and marketing petroleum products, also produces “renewable diesel” which is produced in a patented vegetable oil refining process. The upcycled vegetable oil works well as an alternative fuel in diesel engines.
PRETEND THERE IS NO COUNTDOWN
The Real is that being bold isn’t all that hard to do. Major tip: Forget the countdown. Never mind “a-one and a-two and a-three.” Just go.
Practice will help with that. It gets easier every time you do something that makes you scared and nervous.
FOLLOWING IN THE FOOTSTEPS
Bold can also get easier if you can follow along the trails of adventurers and explorers who’ve gone on ahead of you.
- Start a file folder today – either a physical paper one or one on your computer. Choose a few people who you admire for their bravery and bold actions. Research their stories.
- Chances are your heroes started in situations that are no better than yours right now and they made it. Find out how they did it. Look at ways that maybe you can do it your own self in your own field.
Here’s a poem:
I AM NOT HERE TO AUDITION
I’m not here to fill
A role one playwright
Or another put down
To get some constipated plot
Moving this way or that.
I’m not here to match
A cast director’s vote
For color coordination
Or for an echo of some
Old star’s past glory.
I’m not here to act out
Some director’s dictum
Of the statement I must make
While juggling stereotypes
And tired old clichés.
I’m not here to bend
And spend myself,
Reworking every line
To make some producer’s
Wet dream more sublime.
I’m not here to audition.
The part is already mine.
Who I am is what I am,
And, on this stage,
I’m the star and the chorus line.
Whether I show what’s honest,
Whether I show what’s real,
Whether I am brave enough
To show what I truly feel:
Only I can decide.
I’m not here to audition,
And neither, my dear, are you.
On another stage,
On a different page,
For you, it’s just as true….
By Netta Kanoho
Header image credit: “Fortune Favours the Bold” by Jan (Arny) Messersmith via Flickr [CC BY-NC-ND 2.0]
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