Many times in our lives and some more than others, we’ve seen people do things we can only dream of if we can even dare. They are so confident and seem bolder than Simba on top of Pride Rock, they look like giants trapped in human bodies. We may envy them, wanna be like them and covet their boldness to say and do as they please. If we are opportuned enough we may even pick their brain and ask the itching questions: “How do you do it?” “How do you live so boldly?” “How are you so confident?”
For today’s blog post we’ll be looking into how we can live bolder lives. Let’s gooo!
What is boldness?
Personally, I feel like boldness is the ability to live and behave honestly no matter the circumstances or consequences. Basically, it is living the "real you."
An anime I just finished watching yesterday, Bloom Into You has several themes but what of the themes poses the question "who is the real you?" it does this through a stage play which is yet to happen but the plot is basically, a girl wakes up with amnesia in the hospital, the nurse advises her to ask those close to her who she is in order to know how to going on living her life.
Her classmate describes her as prim and proper, her brother describes her as cold and her lover describes her as vulnerable. Who is the real her? She wants to choose one of the three but there's a fourth option she doesn't yet know about, she can start over, she can decide to be whoever she wants. I believe humans are the only earthly beings with the ability to completely reinvent ourselves.
A Timid Lion???
In his book The Spirit of Leadership, Dr Myles Munroe talks about a story which was told to him by a village head in Zimbabwe, here’s a summary.
A shepherd while tending to his sheep finds a lonely lion cub, out of pity he took it in and raised it amongst his flock. The lion grew up and behaved like sheep, it bleated instead of roar, so it was a sheep expect in appearance.
One day as the sheep were drinking water at the river, they came upon a magnificent and terrifying maned beast, it roared majestically and it scared the be-Jesus out of the flock and they all ran away including the lion-sheep and cowered in fear but too bad for the lamb that was caught in the magnificent beast’s mouth. Another day the lion-sheep saw the beast and ran away but the sheep didn’t follow, it was its reflection that scared him.
One fateful day, they all went to drink water again and the beast appeared and roared and the sheep ran but the lion-sheep didn’t, it now saw two magnificent beasts in the water instead of one, i.e. its reflection and the other lion. The lion roared and the lion-sheep tried to copy it but it could only let out sheep noises but after several tries it got it!
The other lion was leaving and looked back at it as if to say “are you coming?” After some contemplating and looking back at its old life, the lion-sheep turned full blown lion turned back on its safe life as a sheep and followed the lion into the jungle. In other words, it was bold enough to take a risk and take charge of its destiny! It decided to live honestly.
The significance of this story in this context is that mindset is very important, in order to live boldly you will have to sacrifice your comfort zone and take that decisive step (see 3 Reasons To Leave Your Comfort Zone Today!).
How to Live Boldly
Living boldly is no walk in the park it's more like crawling in the park, it can be pleasurable sometimes but other times it's tough af! There a few things you can do to start living boldly and with more confidence and we're gonna look into them right now!
1. Make a Strong Decision
"Indecision is the graveyard of good intention." - Anonymous
Lasting change begins with a strong decision supported by an ironclad resolve or set of convictions. It is not easy to decide to change your life, to be like that lion who decided to leave behind its life as a sheep. You must be willing to divorce your marriage with mediocrity, excuses, fear (see 5 Tips for Overcoming Fear), overthinking (see9 Ways to Tackle Overthinking), indecision (see Indecisive Much? How to Deal with Indecision in 10 Ways!), procrastination (see 8 Practical Solutions to Procrastination), etc.
According to Carolyn L. Rubenstein from Psychology Today, " Indecision and uncertainty can be dangerous, as the ability to analyze two sides of a problem and draw a timely conclusion are crucial, especially in the interconnected world we live in today." Think of it this way, a compass or in these days a GPS if it can't decide whether you should take a left or a right is pretty useless isn't it?
Taking the first step can be very terrifying, it can feel like walking with big rocks tied to your foot. The mind is the what you need to conquer in order to live boldly. You will need to ask yourself the hard questions to figure out why you're being indecisive or in a state of inertia. Are you afraid of something? Why? What is the ultimate cost of not living the life you truly want? One of them is definitely regret which I'll explore a bit more subsequently.
When you've truly analysed the issues with making a decision, make a decision even though it may be a "bad" one. Living boldly isn't always about making good or right decisions it also involves dealing with the consequences of your decisions and actions.
2. Accept Your Flaws
A person who lives boldly and confidently isn't one who claims to be perfect, for this is an insecurity in itself (see Beefing Up Your Security: How to Overcome Insecurity). It is one who has accepted themselves as imperfect and with flaws and has learned to love and appreciate themselves flaws and all.
Most people who have owned their flaws are happier, I mean sometimes we're jealous of them, like how are they able to say this and do that. For example, someone coming out and saying they're gay isn't easy to accept but many of them will say they grew tired of living a lie and just one day said "fuck it!"
Those people that decided to study what they wanted to at university despite the wishes of their parents or those people who quit their job to pursue their dreams will tell you that it wasn't easy, they may have been seen as "weird" or "crazy" but they had to listen and dance to the beat of the drums of their hearts. Essentially, to live boldly, you gotta "own it" whatever it is you doing or who you're becoming.
3. Think "Potential Future Regrets"
Regret is one of the most painful emotions us humans can express. It's like a sharp poison arrow to the heart. One doesn't even have to be old and on their deathbed to have regrets. For example, there are many times where I saw a girl I wanted to talk to and didn't out of lack of confidence (see 12 Tips to Boost Self-confidence and Self-esteem), fear or whatnot when I see her talking to another guy, it hurts but I can't be vexed with him because he did what I was unwilling to do. Those who live boldly are not people who don't understand the concept of fear, it is people who take action despite their fears or any other issue.
When you go to an old folks home or visit people on their deathbeds you see a lot of regret written on their faces, I could've done more of this and less of that, I would've told her how I feel but..., I should've started that business; there's a lot of "coulda, woulda, shoulda."
When you look into the future of you looking back on your life, will those words be on your lips and on your face or will you have a big grin because you're satisfied with how you lived?
4. Study The Risks and People Who Live Boldly and Take Action!
Studying something new is very important. When you get a new gadget there's usually a manual that you should read to get a hang of it and the way to show you've learned it is to take action. When you're in school you get taught, you study and you get tested with assignments, tests, exams, etc.
The purpose of studying is to gain knowledge and understanding of a particular thing so when you wanna take bold steps in life aka take risks, according to Pick The Brain, you gotta ask yourself these questions: "What’s in it for me if I do this? What will I gain? What will I lose? Which one has a heavier weight- the advantage or disadvantage?" This way you can calculate the risks involved and weigh the pros and cons and ultimately choose how to proceed and take bold action.
The other thing you should study are people who you admire that live boldly. Whether it is a far away or fictional hero or even someone you know personally, there are lessons of boldness to be learned from them. If you get the chance they could even personally mentor you but most likely that won't be the case of a far away hero so you can read their books, watch their videos and listen to their stories. Many of them will tell you how they were timid at one point like the lion-sheep but a turning point in their lives awakened the magnificent beast within, maybe it was a death of a loved one, heartbreak, sage advice, etc.
Of course studying isn't complete until you apply it so when you study these people and their success, you should copy them shameless and see if you can replicate their results and learn from their mistakes but it should be tailored to suit your situation because chances are your situations may be similar but not exactly the same.
5. Don't Dwell on Scarcity
When you picture a desert, what comes to your mind? My guess is lots of sand, heat, dryness, lack of greenery, no water, etc. These things are true for the most part but yet cacti are able to survive there quite well. A desert is a place of scarcity thus many things can't comfortably survive there yet the cacti are just chilling lol.
Bold people don't always look at what they lack or what they can't do, they are positive thinking people with an abundance mindset. They tell all the bad energy to stay far awayyyy lol. They don't buy into the negativity on the news and they can be generous and kind people.
In his book The Power of Positive Thinking, Norman Vincent Peale (NVP) recalls a crucial event in his life. He started a monthly subscription newsletter (or something to that effect) with some partners and they ran into financial straits and they would've had to close down. A woman who works with them asked how many subscribers they needed for the business to strive and it was 100k.
Instead of giving them money to stay afloat in the meantime, she asked them if they could envision them at 100k, NVP couldn't see it but his partner could, his partner was enthused. Subsequently, NVP say the error of his scarcity mindset I think after the fact that they hit 100k subscribers!
" For God has not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind." - 2 Timothy 1:7
When we pray, we can be given renewed energy from our source which is our Creator. He gave us dominion over all things. Dominion means control and when we are being timid or fearful, we are not controlling our environment i.e. we are not fulfilling our divine purpose.
There are times when common sense will tell us to give up, to be timid, to roll into a ball like an armadillo or hid inside our shell like tortoises but we have to stay strong. For example, black heroes like Martin Luther King Jr and Nelson Mandela had trying times where they could've rolled over or given up such as them being imprisoned or their lives being threatened but despite this, they soldiered on.
MLK and Mandela are celebrated and renowned world wide, Mandela is even seen as a great leader universally. MLK always believed God will come through for him no matter the situation and that's why he was steadfast in his faith and beliefs and that's how he was able to keep black people composed and non-violent on their struggle to gaining their civil rights.
QOTD: “Don’t fear failure so much that you refuse to try new things. The saddest summary of life contains three descriptions: could have, might have, and should have.” - Unknown
WELL, THAT'S IT FROM ME GUYS. NOW...
What steps will you be taking to live boldly today? Comment below! Like and Share this blog post with your friends. SUBSCRIBE to my blog so you never miss a thing and Follow me on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest. See ya next Monday!
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My name is Ofai and I'm passionate about blogging and it gives me fulfillment that I can help you out so sit back, relax and enjoy your weekly carats of #SelfImprovementGems with me!