What does it mean to be a “bad ass”? My perception of someone who is a ‘bad ass’ is someone who knows who they are. Their behavior and appearance are as unique and indescribable as they are. They’re not part of a group or class, and way too cool for words. They’re a bad ass.
Despite the term, this is something I’ve always aspired to be. I can honestly say that being trained as a coach by the International Coach Academy, Australia and being coached has made me the bad ass I am today. Let me explain.
Most of us are too scared to be bad ass. Hence, being called one is a compliment. It takes guts, confidence and presence. It takes being real and vulnerable and out there. Because you know that when you are …you own the world.
Genuinely intriguing and intrigued by others, you radiate confidence in everything you do. You fear nobody. You’ve taken a few more punches in your life and lived to tell the tale. So you treat people with respect but when they cross your boundaries you make it crystal clear what is and is NOT acceptable to you.
Above all you keep your cool. You’re ultra cool. You know what you’re feeling and you know that to give in to an emotional reaction is to undermine your cool. You can manage your emotions – NOT by denying them but by owning them. And then you determine the best (i.e. cool) way to handle them in the situation. You do not justify insecurities by bringing others down.
It’s a lot easier to do what you want, when you want, where you want. Here are 5 easy ways to be a good (maybe great) bad ass:
1. Give up people pleasing.
Stop trying to be who others want you to be. Stop agreeing with them to fit in. You may not be consciously aware that you are doing this, but there is a part of your psyche that wants to please others in order to avoid reactions that you are afraid of. There is nothing to fear. Conflict will not kill you. You are bad ass.
2. Stop running with the bulls.
A stampede is an act of mass impulse. It is rarely advantageous and hell if you get caught in one of them. Stop running with those who have no clear direction or purpose. Pick your bad ass tribe and quietly lead them.
3. Don’t let them fence you in.
Think of boundaries as a fence in your bad ass backyard. You are the gatekeeper; you get to decide whom you let in and who you keep out, who you let into the whole back yard, or who you let just inside the gate. Healthy boundaries protect and take good care of you.
4. Stop believing your feelings are fact.
It requires a cool pause to check in before responding, rather than sloppily venting emotions in a reactive way. This is something most non-bad ass people may not realize. Cool people not only have feelings but they roll around in them and then let go. They understand that if you lock them up you become a victim of them. They will haunt you, trigger you, and overall leave you vulnerable (and very uncool) to the emotional weaponry of others – anger, guilt, and whining.
5. Be real.
You can call it authentic (but a bad ass might not use that word). Either way it involves effort. A real bad ass knows who they are and plays to their strengths. They don’t fain humility or bravado. They just are. Fully human. They stand in the understanding that being vulnerable is simply a part of being human. And no one is stronger or cooler than when they can embrace their humanity.
How do you rate yourself?