When my cousin died I watched my aunt go through unspeakable grief. In the processing of her grief, she decided she was to become “a spitfire” instead of being nice all the time because my cousin had told her to do this before she died.
The only thing you lose this way is the suckers.
The world gains nothing when we are weak
We gain nothing when we are weak. We must be spitfires. We must be bold.
It’s been a rough few months. I keep it honest around here. I’ve learned I benefit when I am bold. I do not benefit from “being nice” as society conditions women to be. I convinced myself somehow I was “taking the high road” on a couple things — but I most certainly was not. Some boldness would have taken me father faster.
What I have learned about myself in recent years is I usually find myself in situations where I must compensate for others’ weaknesses. I learned this working in a busy downtown detox and a recovery center. I learned this when working on team efforts in which team members wanted to waste time or take extra steps to get to a readily apparent solution. (A coworker yesterday to me said, “Whoa, I like how you just cut through all the red tape!) This is what I do. This is NOT, however, what other people do. And I forget that.
I need other people to be leaders, too.
When you don’t lead, when you don’t take charge, when you don’t find empowered ways to solve problems — WHY are you even here? Go be a follower. Seriously.
Case in point: my living situation. I have a landlady who told me today she should have given my noisy neighbors a complaint in writing. Excuse me? After months of me complaining this still hasn’t been in writing? I need you to grow a pair, lady.
People need you to lead.
If you have clients or customers, they need you to grow a pair. Or they will go away.
Yes, I tried to be nice too.
Now after another sleepless night, I see the true cost. I tried to NOT call the police, I tried to NOT be “the complainer,” and I mistakenly thought a landlord would enforce my lease and the local housing codes. Nope! So I ended up talking to the police anyway, who told me to call 911 from now on as the noise is happening. I’m probably going to end up in court (which was always fun in my social work days…how are the judges doing these days, anyway?) But I’m the tenant. There’s only so much I can do. I still need the landlady to have a damn set of balls. I need her to be bold. Be a spitfire. LEAD.
I’m done being nice.
I’m going to be bold from now on. My cousin up in Heaven is probably looking down on me glaringly right now saying, “Finally!”
I’ve always been bold. I’ve always been TOO. Too much. Too loud. Too confident in the vein of, “Who does she think she is?!” There was a point in childhood where it was frowned upon by adults and I began to learn to tone it down. Many things I was since my earliest years were squelched over the years — my boldness, my voice, my creativity… I am DONE with that. (I think I’ve mentioned my re-parenting process before on the blog and Fearless 5 Podcasts).
Something about running my own business has emboldened me.
Switching careers from broadcasting to social work and back again also emboldened me. Age has contributed as well. Sobriety helped a lot. Today, as it’s that time of year again (listen to podcast #30 for more on that) I find myself reflective. Life has certainly beaten me down over the past five months in more ways than I could possibly share publicly. I can share about the neighbor ordeal because it’s a good example everyone can relate to. But there have been other things I’ve kept private for good reason. Some I will tell someday when the time is right.
Today, I reflected on how much I’ve been through at my age that most people haven’t. Actually, much of it happened when I was much younger so that’s not even a true statement. So. Many. Things. It’s been a truly weird and unique life so far. That has made me bold, too.