Bold: Not afraid of danger or difficult situations; Fearless
What does it mean to live boldly?
- Fully participate in life instead of watching from the sidelines
- Forge new paths rather than ride a trolley down safe, well-established paths
- Follow with grace, but lead with assurance
- Meet challenges with confidence that you’ll overcome them
- Embrace chaos; dance to the unpredictable melody of life
My journey through life has not always been bold, but it began that way and it will eventually end that way. Over the years, if I were to chart my life on a Boldness Scale, it would look much like a roller coaster ride, with lots of peaks and valleys. The overriding takeaway though would be a trajectory upwards and to the right. It would probably look something like this:
Why isn’t the boldness a straight upwards line?
- Things happen.
Life randomly throws obstacles at us and some of those can be traumatic. Trauma can often instill fear and fear is the enemy of boldness. Desire to live a fulfilling life, however, is also the enemy of fear. So in my life, there have been a few cycles of Boldness > Trauma > Fear > Desire > Boldness. In some phases, the Trauma led to an extended period of Fear, but over time the period of Fear has grown shorter and shorter. I think that’s because I have the experience and wisdom now to know that I don’t want to live in Fear, and that my Desire to live boldly is very strong.
It’s those times when Desire overcomes Fear that I’ve taken chances, whether it was to move 2,000 miles from the only place I’d known, or to come out of the closet, or to write a book, or to start my own business. So many of the things I’m most proud of are a direct reflection of my desire to live life boldly.
Boldness is now my default. Fear isn’t completely gone. It pokes me like a bony finger now and then. And I know that any time Trauma wants, it can knock me off my feet. But Desire to fully participate in life – boldly – beats Trauma and Fear more easily than it has in the past.
I expect that graph above to have fewer and fewer dips in the future because I just won’t let Trauma and Fear take hold for long anymore.