What does it mean to LIVE BOLD?
Merriam-Webster has a few definitions of Bold. Two that really resonate with LIVE BOLD LLC are 1: fearless before danger 2: showing or requiring a fearless daring spirit. Keeping these two definitions in mind it is right to correlate living boldly with living in a fearless way. Having said that I need to address what fear is and how it relates to our lives.
Fear is a biological response to a stimulus. When you experience fear your heart begins to race, palms get sweaty and your vision becomes focused on the perceived danger. Fear isn’t bad. It serves a purpose. Back in the day when your ancestor was hunting with a spear or bow, he would go into the woods with his head on a swivel. He wasn’t just looking for tasty game to bring home and place on the dinner table. Your ancestor had to be alert for other predators in the area. If one of those predators surprised him his body would react in a way that gets him ready to fight or run. Hopefully he didn’t become the tasty treat for a bear or lion.
Fast forward to modern times. We have two categories of fears; rational and irrational. The rational fear is now when you’re walking in a dark parking garage and observing some shady characters around. You’re not sure what their intentions are but you feel uncomfortable. Possibly this is for good reason. If you have ever been the victim of a violent crime you know exactly what I am talking about. Your fight or flight fear response kicks in and you run or prepare to launch a furry of punches. This is the normal evolutionary response to a rational fear.
The irrational fears you face today are a little different. In society there is a disproportion of our reactions to what we actually face. A great example is that the number one fear is public speaking. Number two is death. By that rationality it’s better to be the one in the coffin than the person giving the eulogy. How crazy is that? Let’s look objectively on our fears and decide how to best combat them.
Personally, I remember being afraid of everything as a child and into my teenage years. During my early adulthood I decided that I was done living in fear. From this point forward I was going to be intentional. Part of that process involved doing things that scare me. I looked at it as a series of challenges. It started with roller coasters. At this stage in my life I have become a skydiver, pilot and scuba instructor. This might be an extreme example but that was my journey. I continue to work on other fears like public speaking by attending groups like Toastmasters International. I identified specific fears and took progressive steps to confront them.
What about social fears? This is another type of fear that might not be so rational. How much do you worry about what the people around you think? If you try something and fail will your social circle stop interacting with you? If the answer is yes it might be time to reevaluate some of those relationships and figure out why those people are important to you. Thomas Edison reported failing 10,000 times before successfully inventing the light bulb. How different would our lives be if he gave up after his first few failures? Or what if he told someone this crazy idea about this light bulb, was ridiculed, and decided not to try? Instead when asked about his failures he responded, “It wasn’t a failure. I have discovered 10,000 ways how not to create a light bulb.” What an amazing way to respond to social criticism.
Point blank the world needs your contributions. It needs you to show up, unafraid of what others might think or how they might respond. You are a unique and beautiful person who is called to be authentically you. Challenge yourself. Perfect the things that are important to you and do not let fear hold you back. This is your calling. This is your opportunity to LIVE BOLD!