Day Sixty-Five – Authentically Courageous


I am awake, I am alive, and this morning this journey (or more this “life experiment”) continues …

Yesterday, I continued my read of Brené Brown’s “Dare to Lead”. A quiz to determine which two values drive your existence proved to be very enlightening. The challenge – from a list of near 50 values (MANY of which are desirable) choose TWO, the two that you would soon see are the backbone for all the other values you strive for.

My two – authenticity and courage – which brings me to today’s post.

Authenticity is everything to me – sharing with you who I truly am, flaws and all. It takes courage but nothing like the courage it takes to rebuild a life after violence or tragedy, so onward I go. But authenticity requires congruency and that is where I have struggled.

You see, by day I AM the uplifting, energized, happy individual that writes these posts. I wake invigorated each day, anxious to begin yet another chapter on this amazing carnival ride called “Life” but come late afternoon/evening the Sandi I love disappears, replaced by a shell of my morning self.

Shell Sandi has no energy. Shell Sandi has given her all to her career by about 3 pm. As a result, Shell Sandi spends her evenings sitting on the couch, mindlessly consuming television shows and high-calorie chips, struggling to stay awake to a reasonable time so she can go to bed to rest, so as to wake and start again. And Shell Sandi hates who she is.

Enter a solution. A friend reintroduced me to the concept of naps recently, a practice I employed daily in Toronto when my career demanded a 4 a.m. start and my desire to be a good parent required I be coherent for evenings with my soon-to-be full grown children. Back then, a nap after work allowed me to be ALIVE for my evenings with them, as alive as I was each morning. Perhaps it was time to reinstate an old habit?

Fast forward to this morning – a full 4 days after daily naps have been added to my daily routine. I am happy to report that this tush has not even TOUCHED the couch in the manner it use to. Evenings are now spent conversing with friends, reading, cleaning, just plain living or …dancing.

Yes, last night a full hour dance party ensued and the result? Not only did I FULLY ENJOY my evening but … I got in over 6000 steps as my spirit SMILED full on! Hatred – gone.

Conclusion – this is me. A woman who wants to live her life honestly, not as my Mom or Dad or siblings or best friend, but as me. To do that I need the courage to try new things, to abandon things that don’t work, to embrace the things that do even when those things are things I use to do many moons ago. And based on recent data, for the foreseeable future, this woman will be napping and dancing and smiling, courageously and authentically.

Which begs the question – what works for you my friend and what doesn’t? Do you change what doesn’t or just accept the disappointment you feel in yourself? Please don’t. Ever.

You are beautiful after all, a beautiful experiment and perhaps it is time to change a variable or two or ten.

Food for thought.