The One Non-Negotiable Action You Must Take Before Creating Your Bold and Fearless Life
“A bold and fearless life” — does that sound unattainable?
Does it sound like the motto for a new age action hero?
The idea of living a bold and fearless life might make you think you need special abilities or super powers. But this blog isn't about that kind of bold and fearless.
I'm not here to inspire you to slay dragons or leap tall buildings today.
I'm here to inspire and challenge you to take the next action that needs to be taken from the place you are right now so you can get to the place you want to be.
What Is Bold and Fearless Living?
The other day I had an epiphany while reading an article by Corbett Barr of the blog Think Traffic. He was writing about the importance of having a “unique selling point” on your blog or a point of difference.
I'd rather call it a “unique serving point” — what I'm serving you that is different from what you might get elsewhere. Bloggers need to articulate that serving point to their readers on a regular basis. I want to be sure you know my serving points.
The tagline of my blog says, “personal growth for fearless living.” But what it could also say is “practical actions to fear less so you can live more.” My unique serving points at Live Bold and Bloom are these:
- usable actions (that actually work) to help bring your life closer to your passion or dream every day;
- techniques to help you push past fear so fear begins to diminish and doesn't control you;
- ideas to foster mind shifts so you can stretch yourself to live more to your potential.
I firmly believe that each and every one of us, regardless of where we are in life right now, have the potential to make life even better. Maybe it's an incremental change. Maybe it's a huge shift. Either way, there's more in all of us than we are living right now.
That's the beautiful thing about potential. It keeps growing every time you think you've filled it.
And why shouldn't we keep pursuing our potential? This glorious life has more to offer us than we could ever experience in one lifetime. Don't you want to savor as much as you can?
Taking the actions to fulfill potential is about as bold and fearless as you can get. It is shouting “YES” to life in a loud and clear voice.
The One Non-Negotiable Action
So that brings me back to creating your bold and fearless life and the non-negotiable action you must take before you can begin creating that life.
You and I and everyone reading this post today are at different points on our personal growth journeys.
- Some people may be at the place where bold living means slaying a dragon, doing something huge and totally life-altering.
- For others, bold living might mean making a very subtle shift in attitude or creating a boundary where there wasn't one before.
To create a bold and fearless life for yourself, you have to define what that is for you. You have to create the outcome of a bold and fearless life in your mind, and then begin to take the steps to get there.
The one non-negotiable action is this: you must create a vision for your life.
If you don't know what you are working toward, how will you ever get there?
Now, as I mentioned above, I like to deal in practicalities, in real-life solutions to real-life problems that bring real-life results.
Creating a vision doesn't mean, “you write it and it will appear.” It means, “you write it, you determine the steps to get you there, you take the steps, and you get there.”
And the very first step on the journey to a bold and fearless life (however you define it) is to define it — to write a vision for yourself. A vision is your Emerald City, and whether you are in the dark forest or on the Yellow Brick Road, you need to be able to see Oz glimmering in the distance.
So let's create a life vision. Go get a paper and pencil. If you don't have time to do it all today, print off this article and work on it over the next few days.
How to Create Your Life Vision
Step 1: Magical Thinking
This is the only time you get to use magical thinking during this process. I'm going to ask you to suspend disbelief and pretend you have the power to flip a switch (or twitch your nose like Samantha in Bewitched) and have life exactly as you want it right now, today.
That's where we're starting — if you could make your life exactly how you wish it could be right now, how would it look? Don't start writing yet, just think for a moment.
Now the one caveat to this magical thinking game is this: if you decide during this exercise you want to include the absolutely impossible (ie: becoming a singing sensation if you are tone deaf), you are wasting your time. Steer clear of the absolutely impossible, and focus on the potentially attainable.
Note: for all of the steps below, start writing your responses.
Step 2: Your Career
- If you could work in any job doing exactly what you want, what would you do?
- Where would be you working?
- How many days/hours a week?
- How much would you make?
- Who would you work with?
- How would you feel in this job?
Step 3: Your Relationships
- Describe the primary love relationship in your life (even if it doesn't exist right now).
- How do you communicate and interact?
- What do you do together?
- How do you solve problems together?
- How do you have fun together?
- Describe your relationship with your children and other family members.
- Describe your relationship with friends and co-workers.
Step 4: Your Health and Wellness
- Describe how you feel physically.
- How often and how much do you exercise?
- What kinds of food do you eat regularly?
- How do you take care of your mental health to live a balanced life with little stress?
- How do you take care of your spiritual needs?
Step 5: Your Lifestyle
- Describe your home — the size, the design, the decor, the location.
- What do you do regularly for fun and relaxation?
- What do you do for continued learning, self-improvement, and personal growth?
- Where and how often do you travel?
Step 6: Your Finances
- Describe in general terms your financial situation — your balance of income, expenses, savings, etc.
Step 7: Your Life Vision
Using all of your answers above (and anything else you may want to add), write a life vision for yourself in paragraph form, as though you are writing a story about yourself in first person. Keep this vision posted or where you can look at it often.
Here are some things to note about your life vision:
- If you aren't sure about your vision for some of the life areas, that's fine. Just write a very loose or general answer. Sometimes it take time for your vision to become clear.
- You can change or alter it any time you wish. It's your vision after all.
- You may not achieve everything on your life vision, at least not all at once. And maybe never. That's OK. Because the real boldness in life isn't in the achievement of your vision. It's in taking the actions to get there.
- You don't have to work on everything at once. In fact, you shouldn't. Pick the most important thing to you now, or just choose anything in the vision, and break it down into the smallest possible tasks and actions. Then start taking the actions.
- Try to take an action toward your vision every day. Even if you feel crappy. Even if you don't think you'll ever get there. Even if it's a teeny tiny, itty bitty action. Every step forward, no matter how small, brings you closer to your vision.
- Visualize your vision. Visualize yourself taking the actions to create your vision. This isn't magic. There is real science behind visualization. You are rewiring your brain and creating new neural pathways to support the changes you are making.
- Enjoy the process! Most of life is lived during times of process, not achievement.
If you want to live a bold and fearless life, whatever that is for you, then take the time to define it. Design a beautiful vision for your life, an Emerald City in the distance. Craft it exactly to your liking. Refine it if necessary. Then keep it with you where you can see it daily.
Now, pick one thing and follow the Yellow Brick Road to your bold and fearless life!
Special Note: The Habit Course (led by Leo Babauta, Katie Tallo, and me) is coming soon. Limited spaces. The wait list is open.