The textbook version of bold defines it as “showing a willingness to take risks; being confident and courageous.“
In my opinion, being bold means having a core set of beliefs, values and principles and being willing to stand up for and live by them even in the face of adversity and differences in opinion. Too often we think that living boldly simply means being brave enough to take risks and having a “bigger than life” personality.
Living boldly is more than about jumping out of a plane with a parachute or skinny dipping in the ocean. Instead, it’s more about having opinions on voting rights, racial discrimination and vaccinations and being able to express those opinion even if everyone else around has a differing opinion.
It’s also more than about being that popular man or woman who is very loud and always is the life of the party or that person who speaks up in a meeting simply for the sake of making their presence known. Instead, it’s more about that person who quietly supports a friend in need or who stands up for that person who is being bullied.
A person who’s living boldly also possesses a certain presence. Their boldness is recognized and respected and they often leave an impact on their inner circle, their community, and depending on the size of their platform, sometimes even the world. Their presence is felt not necessarily through their “big” personalities, but instead through the actions they undertake in trying to stay true to their core principles and convictions.
Martin Luther King Jr and Mother Theresa are perfect examples of this. Both led bold lives and, in my definition of boldness, even though Mother Theresa was a lot less verbal than Martin Luther King Jr, her life was no less bold. Both have made lasting impacts on society in different ways.
Now, we don’t all have to live our lives boldly on the scale of Martin Luther King Jr and Mother Theresa but if we have been showing charity, respect, and kindness to our neighbors and have been staying true to our core values and principles, then we can proudly say that we have been “living our lives boldly.”
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