The other day I asked someone close to me if he recognized patterns in my behavior or his own. I was on the path of a truth, and seeking confirmation. I had recently watched Brene Brown's powerful, life-changing Call to Courage on Netflix, and was in a deeply reflective state of mind. His answer was vague and not at all what I was really asking about, but it was highly informative about the way he was feeling, what he was thinking, and what he needed in that moment. It created a whole new set of questions. Questions I could only ask myself.
There's no rules to conversation, either. But there are responsibilities. Listen. Pause. Think. Act.
It's not the acting that is the hard part. While I can easily get up before the sun rise and complete a full day's list of chores before sitting down with a second cup of coffee, it's more difficult to sit with a truth and listen to it on a soul level. To hear not only what was said, but what was left unsaid. But it always unfolds in 4 steps:
|I love Elephant Journal. If you don't already follow them by social media or email, |
I highly recommend!
When we put it in terms of a 3-year old's logic, it is just four things. That's easily doable, right?
Living in a bold way doesn't mean the same thing for everyone. The image that generally comes to mind is someone rushing out headfirst into to world, afraid of nothing, ready for adventures that involve a lot of risks and moving around (and generally some degree of financial security.) However, living boldy can just be about finally taking control of your life. Letting love in. Making that career change. Moving to your dream location with no idea what comes next. Wearing a bikini. Getting a tattoo. Giving up dairy. Driving across the country to see your family. Writing a letter to the editor and using your real name.
Or, it can be asking a question, getting a vague answer, and genuinely listening not only to the other person, but your own intuition as well. It can be taking the pause you need in order to do the thinking (and my personal favorite, the planning!) before acting. Sometimes the boldest thing we will ever do is pause. Give time, and space. For others, and for ourselves. Rushing and acting without listening, pausing or thinking isn't living boldly.
It's living foolishly.
|Instagram insight from Elephant Journal again. I'm serious, find and follow!|
And yeah, I've done it too, because the listening, pausing and thinking can at times be so damn difficult. For me, it's far easier to act. My living boldy at times looks like taking a time-out. Pausing. Which is so damned difficult and heart-wrenching and can look to others like I am doing nothing but eating chocolate and binge watching Netflix on the couch for 8 days straight. But it's okay.
Nothing evolves without a pause.
And I've learned two very important things about what others think of me:
1. It's none of my business.
2. They aren't thinking of me at all. They're looking at their phones.
I started this blog in 2011 to encourage myself, through through 30 days of daily writing and sharing, to overcome a soul-punching heartbreak by not retreating from the world as I was doing, but instead learning to embrace life in a bold, fierce way, incorporating more listening, pausing, thinking, and acting. I'm rebooting it, with the original posts from 2011 all in the archives, to continue sharing this message. Coming here to this space again feels like visiting an old friend, and I'm very excited about what is to come! I already have a list of post topics to share with you, including book reviews, interviews, and mind-body-wellness insights! It's my hope that through writing and sharing we can grow together, living life in a bolder way. Please comment, follow, and share. See you next week!
**Find out more about Elephant Journal here!