So I got on the bus at 7 a.m. today, and realized that in my (not uncharacteristic) frenzy of getting a timely start to my morning commute, I forgot my iPhone. With no feeds to check or snaps to send, I finally had an hour in front of me with nothing to do but finish the one book that has been on my mind more than any other over the past couple of months.
I started Jen Sincero’s book, You Are a Badass, in late July. I had seen it on the shelves of big wig book stores for months, and despite noticing it repeatedly I never picked it up. It’s only taken me this long to finish because I’ve reread several chapters more than twice, and it’s turned into a bit of a bible for me, something that’s changed my mindset so much that I’ve been savouring every new chapter and delving in when I felt I needed it. For context, I’m an absolute freak for self-help books. I live and breath them. Anyone who knows me well will tell you that I’ve always been insightful, and (annoyingly, I’m sure) keen on advising my friends and family on how to lead their best lives. Hence the blog! I dig these books, and this one was just up my alley.
I’ve always felt this immense need to figure out my purpose as an individual, what the hell I’m bringing to the world and why the universe has led me here. It sounds cheesy and weird, for someone without any significant spiritual upbringing, I’ve found myself to be one of the most spiritually aware people I know at this point in my life. It’s led me to university studies of religious culture, self-help books, dream interpretations and studies of sleep, even the local Plateau astrologer. I’ve seen some shit (and it’s awesome).
You Are a Badass changed my freaking life. The combination of Sincero’s refreshingly bold outlook on life and her candid how-to’s for living like a champion had me calling all of my friends (after every chapter) and telling them to get reading. I’m having trouble even writing about it, because her writing needs to be experienced first hand to do it any justice.
To be brief, partially because I don’t think I can quite put into words how fucking psyched on life this book has left me (and mostly because I’m four chapters behind in my history and sexuality class and time is of the essence), this book has instilled in me a firm belief that I am the way I am for a reason. The positive affirmations I’ve been reciting to myself for years, the oddly optimistic way I’ve been able to bring myself through all of the hard stuff, and the insane passion I have for being grateful and present are real, they’re intentional, and they mean something. The incredible things that have happened to me haven’t been because I’m lucky.
It’s the genuine belief that you can have and embody anything that you set your mind to. It’s been ingrained in me since day one, and I finally feel like I have myself to thank (not blind luck) for getting what I’ve always wanted. The belief that the world needs what I’ve got has kept me going when I didn’t think anything else could. This book reminded me of that, and it brought me to tears with gratitude and awe at the fact that despite how shitty things get, how bloody hard the world can be, all we have is ourselves. And that is all we need.
More on gratitude and the many themes of the book to come. Thank you Jen Sincero.