My Search for Boldness Takes a Turn

It is already the 3rd day in May of 2010. Where does time go?

This morning I've been thinking about the idea of being bold and what I should be learning out of  this project. Am I a bold individual? I ask this of myself and my answer is yes and no.

For instance, would I jump out of a plane and sky dive my way back to earth? Probably not. Would I eat worms on a dare? Definitely not. Would I stand up for my inner-truths even if it meant death? Maybe...hopefully yes...but then again maybe I'd wimp out in the end.

My quest to be bold easily extends to my everyday actions which may include -- do I work out or not. Yes! I'll do it! Or will I apply myself to my work and give it my all? Yes for sure, I'm in! But these things are mildly bold.

I want to be bold in my thoughts and actions, yet sometimes I'm just a plain wimp. I worry about the people I love, I fear that I'll never add up to much of anything, I get caught up in my fears that the economy is going to plunge again and take me down with it, I look in the mirror and see wrinkles springing up and cringe, and my list goes on.

Am I bold? Today...maybe not. Tomorrow...hopefully so. The next day, who knows? I'm starting to keep a list of the thoughts I have that keep me from making bold choices in life.

On my way to the coffee shop I'm now sitting at in Gothenburg, Sweden, I made a list that included:

1. I would love to own my own house, but what if it never happens.

2. Finishing a book or even writing one that appeals to people may never occur.

3. What is my purpose on this earth anyway? Is there one?

The truth is. I've always wanted to live an adventurous life. I crave. I hope. Something inside of me is seeking something grand. Yet my limiting thoughts at times get the best of me. Being human is a tough enterprise.

A friend of mine sent out an email to a bunch of people and something that he said jumped out at me just before I started this post:

Yet, when you remain blinded by need, the need for self-importance, your inability to pierce the veil will remain.  Then, you will only see the limitations of another--the mask, the illusion that they project upon time and space.  And, you will only experience your own limitation that seeks an audience for acknowledgment.

Hmm...Bob, what are you trying to tell me? The world? Am I to look away from my limitations and then I'll find happiness?

He answers:

We must learn to be in this world as if we are a traveler, a passerby.  To reach and grasp that which happens in this life reaches and grasps an image, the image we hold.  It is what we might call the perfect life.  And when that images passes without being fulfilled we are left with an opinion that binds us.  And, it is this opinion that causes the mask, the illusion that continues to bind you to form believing that you are this body/mind expression.  You will become deceived as this distortion will bind you to itself.

Holy shite!! Ok so, my quest for boldness. Maybe it should include more letting go than grasping for boldness. Maybe it should include more smelling the roses and smiling, or more writing for the sake of my love for writing -- not for a result.

Bob? Any more wisdom you can lend here?

To lift yourself free you must first lift yourself from yourself.  Oh yes, a daunting task as everything you think you are is bound to the belief's and fears; hopes and regret that you sustain out of "necessity."

We must learn to be: free from conditioning (determinism), free from opinion, free from the prison of our self-image, free from our notion of being an individuality, and most importantly free from the need for freedom..

It's strange how we grapple with things and then the answers arrive when we'd least expect them. I've been searching for boldness and have woken up lately feeling that I'm behind the curve -- and today it reached a head as I rode on the tram. And then Bob's email arrived for me to see less than an hour ago.

My search for boldness needs to be more of an acceptance -- and less of striving fest -- I need to bask in the perfection of the moment and apply my skills to the world as I can. One step at a time. I can't scramble for and grasp onto freedom. I must release it all to the winds of destiny and continue to walk my walk.

That's what I'll do...

- Post by Jen of Project BE Bold

My Name is Rose: A Story about Dreams

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The first day of school our professor introduced himself and challenged us to get to know someone we didn't already know. I stood up to look around when a gentle hand touched my shoulder. I turned around to find a wrinkled, little old lady beaming up at me with a smile that lit up her entire being.

She said, 'Hi handsome. My name is Rose. I'm eighty-seven years old. Can I give you a hug?' I laughed and enthusiastically responded, 'Of course you may!' and she gave me a giant squeeze.

'Why are you in college at such a young, innocent age?' I asked. She jokingly replied, 'I'm here to meet a rich husband, get married, and have a couple of kids...

' 'No seriously,' I asked. I was curious what may have motivated her to be taking on this challenge at her age.

'I always dreamed of having a college education and now I'm getting one!' she told me.

After class we walked to the student union building and shared a chocolate milkshake. We became instant friends. Every day for the next three months we would leave class together and talk nonstop. I was always mesmerized listening to this 'time machine' as she shared her wisdom and experience with me. Over the course of the year, Rose became a campus icon and she easily made friends wherever she went... She loved to dress up and she reveled in the attention bestowed upon her from the other students. She was living it up.

At the end of the semester we invited Rose to speak at our football banquet. I'll never forget what she taught us. She was introduced and stepped up to the podium.

As she began to deliver her prepared speech, she dropped her three by five cards on the floor. Frustrated and a little embarrassed she leaned into the microphone and simply said, 'I'm sorry I'm so jittery. I gave up beer for Lent and this whiskey is killing me! I'll never get my speech back in order so let me just tell you what I know.'

As we laughed she cleared her throat and began, ' We do not stop playing because we are old; we grow old because we stop playing. There are only four secrets to staying young, being happy, and achieving success. You have to laugh and find humor every day.

You've got to have a dream. When you lose your dreams, you die. We have so many people walking around who are dead and don't even know it! There is a huge difference between growing older and growing up. If you are nineteen years old and lie in bed for one full year and don't do one productive thing, you will turn twenty years old. If I am eighty-seven years old and stay in bed for a year and never do anything I will turn eighty-eight.

Anybody can grow older. That doesn't take any talent or ability. The idea is to grow up by always finding opportunity in change. Have no regrets. The elderly usually don't have regrets for what we did, but rather for things we did not do. The only people who fear death are those with regrets..'

She concluded her speech by courageously singing 'The Rose.' She challenged each of us to study the lyrics and live them out in our daily lives. At the year's end Rose finished the college degree she had begun all those years ago.

One week after graduation Rose died peacefully in her sleep.. Over two thousand college students attended her funeral in tribute to the wonderful woman who taught by example that it's never too late to be all you can possibly be. When you finish reading this, please send this peaceful word of advice to your friends and family, they'll really enjoy it!

These words have been passed along in loving memory of ROSE. REMEMBER, GROWING OLDER IS MANDATORY. GROWING UP IS OPTIONAL. We make a Living by what we get.

We make a Life by what we give...

- Author unknown

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Make today your masterpiece!!!

- Team Project Be Bold