Living with Boldness, Unapologetically
last week, i began a three-part series that looks into my life’s purpose and expands each part of it. if you haven’t yet, read part one, Spreading Authenticity in an Inauthentic World.
today’s post will be focused on part two of my purpose: to live with boldness, going for my goals unapologetically and inspiring others to do the same.
the gospel according to LEAUX: chapter II
per my first post, boldness is “presenting yourself to others as you are, letting other people take it or leave it as they see fit.” this ties in with authenticity because you must first know yourself, accept yourself, and be yourself to yourself before worrying about how anyone else sees you. once you know who you truly are - quirks, perks, and all - you are ready to show your true self to the world.
i’m not saying that you have to broadcast everything that is right - or wrong - with you. by writing this blog, i have chosen to put my mental illness out there because i feel that my story is valuable to you. my boldness in this way may help you out without you having to tell anyone about what’s going on with you (although talking about it with someone who understands is extremely helpful, in my opinion). however, your version of boldness may be wearing the red lipstick you’ve been eyeing at the store for months, thinking that you couldn’t pull it off. your bold move may be applying for a better job that you think you’ll never be hired for. or it could be sending a flirty snapchat to your crush. when it comes to living with boldness, there is no move too big or small. what matters is that you go for it.
to me, a key component of being bold is being unapologetic. i have recently been eliminating the unnecessary use of the word “sorry” from my vocabulary. at one point, it seemed like i was apologizing for simply existing. *burp* “sorry.” *make a noise* “sorry.” *blink too loudly* “sorry.” ok, so the last one is an exaggeration, but you see my point. i am done apologizing for silly things like voicing my legitimate and logical opinion, disagreeing with co-workers, not knowing all of the answers, etc. none of these need apologizing for, because they are part of day-to-day life. it seems silly that such a small word could undermine your self-esteem, but i find myself bolder as i find new ways to replace “sorry.” my favorite one? silence.
another part of being bold is learning to become unbothered, especially by irrelevant people. i have learned that there are those who will always have an opinion about who i am and how i live and what i do… many times, i hear about these opinions secondhand, because those people don’t dare say anything to my face, apparently. it used to bother me that folks had such strong feelings about me and my life, but eventually, it came to amuse me, and i became unbothered. when you worry less about the opinions of small-minded strangers, you become empowered to live with boldness.
the final piece to being bold is to be uncontrollable. there will always be things in life that you can’t control, and that sucks, especially if you’re a control freak like me. it is even worse if you are a control freak with mental illness. it took me years to accept my depression and the fact that i needed medication to get my life together. it’s still tough for me to accept that my bipolar disorder amplifies this need. but although those things are out of my control, my reaction is mine alone. on the LEAUX is my middle finger to mental illness, letting it know that it may control aspects of me, but it does not control me, and i can still help others even while learning to help myself.
living with boldness is tough at times, especially as a black woman, and especially as someone living with mental illness. i worry that if i am “too” unapologetic, unbothered, and uncontrollable, i will be seen as a mad black woman who can only get her way through mean-mugging, neck-rolling, and sass. you know what, though? let them think that. because regardless of what they think about me, i will go after what i want with boldness, and i may not succeed the first time, but eventually, it will be mine.
tell me: how do you live with boldness? what inspires you to be unapologetic, unbothered, and uncontrollable? leave a comment to let me know, and come back next week for the finale of this series!
❤️ lauren dee.