Psst…hey you. Yeah YOU- the one baking that 15th tray of bake sale cookies to replace the ones agreed to by peeps who neglected to come through with theirs. And YOU- manning that volunteer post an hour past your scheduled exit time after it becomes apparent that your relief person is a no-show. Those of YOU doing all the driving, the cooking, the doing. You know who you are. Now that I’ve got your attention, I want you to drop whatever you’re doing, wherever you’re doing it. Gather your things and be ready to do an about-face on life as you currently know it, because your world is about to change. You are being told to go bad-ass and it starts NOW by acquiring these 5 traits:
- Bad-asses don’t require understanding from others. Nope, they don’t, and this fact has probably pissed you off at other junctures in your life because you wondered how they did it. How do some people just not care about what other people think about them? They do it by giving themselves what they need. How do you give yourself understanding? By believing in yourself and being willing to stand in the truth of that self-belief regardless of popular opinion toward said belief. Stand tall when you’re being shaken! Picture yourself as a tree, imagining your self-belief as the roots of that tree. The tree can’t be uprooted if the roots continue to grow stronger and deeper. While growing these roots, this will require training yourself to become deaf to any voices of self-doubt that will endeavor to invade your thoughts and render you powerless. Those voices are false! Learn to nip them in the bud while you’re growing your roots.
- Bad-asses eliminate the dead weight from their lives. Yep, I’m talking about ANY form of dead weight and that absolutely includes people. Does that seem too harsh for the nice person that you see yourself to be? I promise you that there are very few actions you can take that will grant you the magnitude of freedom that this one will, and it’s not nearly as difficult as you’ve imagined it to be when you have an effective dead weight determination method in place. Here’s mine: That which depletes you is dead weight. It’s a simple assessment tool for a reason; that reason being clarity rather than emotional response. Your life is determined by what you fill it with. That means that careful attention must be paid to what you’re reading, watching, and listening to, but above all, WHO you’re engaging with. Obviously, it’s much easier to discontinue a reality show habit that leaves you feeling anxious and brain-dead after viewing it than to distance yourself from a longtime friend. Hence the necessity of depletion assessment, so that it’s not a question of love, loyalty, or the worth of this person, but instead, a matter of clear-cut survival. Is this person depleting me? Yes or no- with no gray area for which the co-dependents among us can make excuses for the other person’s right to deplete us. Simplicity: embrace it.
- Bad-asses say no and it means no. People are like dogs and kids- they know when you mean no and they know when there’s wiggle room to change your mind. Bad-asses don’t leave wiggle room. Why? Because they know why their no is no without needing to make it okay with you through apology or explanation. If you have difficulty being solid when it comes to your no, adapt the no-answer-off-the-cuff policy. This is especially helpful for those of us who agree to things unknowingly simply because we get caught up in the moment. Train yourself to reply to every request made of you by answering, “let me check on that and get back to you.” Then take the time required to ascertain a mindful response that you’re at peace with and give your answer. Giving an answer you’re at peace with eliminates the need for an excuse or apology.
- Bad-asses don’t rescue. Don’t tell me, let me guess… you’re a helper, right? You hate to see someone else floundering when you could just swoop right on in and make the situation right, save the day, save someone else some effort, avoid a potential confrontation or any sort of difficulty? I get that. Stop it. Bad-asses understand that adults are grown people who can take care of themselves and they back off and let them do so accordingly. Think of it this way: every time you save someone else from something that was meant for them, you are blocking what was potentially one of their life lessons. While you may have thought you were helping in the short run, your efforts may have compromised the bigger picture.
- Bad-asses don’t bullshit themselves about themselves. Personal empowerment lies in the acknowledgement of your own truth, regardless of how ugly, scary, offbeat, or irrational you may find that truth to be. Bad-asses are bad-ass because they have made a decision to stand in that truth, weathering the difficulties that doing so may sometimes require while having faith in their ability to do so. They understand that being bad-ass was never about being unkind, selfish, or unsympathetic to the needs of others, but rather, living within a realm of self-belief that allows them to embrace their own self-worth without negating anyone else’s.