And a whole bunch of things I NO longer give a single fuck about.
In full discretion, some of these things I have been learning over the years, and some of these things are how I have always wanted to live.
Some of these things I have developed out of need due to my kids, my lifestyle, or the lifestyle I want to live.
Some of these things are taboo, some of these things are how I wish everyone would, could, should live, and some of these things are just things I want to see change in our world.
And, yes, some of these things should have been a given but I am learning.
Why I am Making this list
Most of these things can be considered controversial due to what “society” deems appropriate and expected. And that is exactly why I am making this list.
But, the one thing that all of these things have in common, is that these are things I no longer feel ashamed about.
They are things that I have stopped caring about and things that I could care less about what other people would think.
These 92 things are things that I unapologetically believe, understand, feel, and know.
And all of these things, I will die on hills for.
These are things that have made my journey, my life, easier. And maybe some of them will help your life be a little easier.
Because every one of these 92 things, allows me to beat to my own drum unapologetically.
92 badass ways
In no specific order, let’s begin.
1. If I used a measuring cup for just water, only water, and nothing but water – it’s going back in the drawer
2. Being brunt, blunt, and upfront about not doing the thing until I have more spoons
3. If my kids are helping, I don’t care what the end result is, even if it is a chaotic, organized pile of Tupperware. I am not going to fix it. The thing I want is in there. They helped and I want them to feel proud about doing a thing, no matter the quality
4. Putting a little extra butter or brown sugar on carrots and roasting them bc fuck the calories, they are going to be fucking delicious
5. Having fun and finding fun in every situation
6. Dancing to the beat of my own drum, literally, and now I know what that whole saying means
7. Reading. Reading. Reading. And more reading. (Not included: 11 more books I read this year)
8. Letting my kids be curious, pushing them to be curious.
9. Doing things for my kids. Now I sit back and support them from afar as they problem-solve. It’s glorious.
10. Wearing bracelets 24/7
11. Wearing Chaco sandals 24/7. Ok, not when I am sleeping
12. Wearing a necklace 24/7
13. Dying my hair and allowing my kids to express themselves by dying their hair if that is what they so wish. It’s hair. It regrows. And if it doesn’t, bald is beautiful. There are so many wigs and personalities that you can try on!
14. Shrugging as a non-answer answer
15. Wearing purple lipstick
16. Being unapologetically me and not bowing to what other people expect
17. Trying things once and only once
18. Being always carefree, sometimes recklessly so
19. Finding the thing that helps spur your inspiration, your creativity, your passion, your productivity. For me, that is THC, and some days a lot of it. Don’t at me. I am a 1000000% better of a parent when I am stoned. Thank you mental health, for the win! But do not get me wrong. I would never put my kids at risk and I never smoke when I am the only parent on duty or the designated driver for the day.
20. Not caring that I am going to piss a lot of people off with that above statement. And definitely not caring about their opinion.
21. Pushing boundaries, all the boundaries, and nothing but the boundaries
22. Loving my kids unconditionally. This shouldn’t need to be here but unfortunately, I have to state it because I UNCONDITIONALLY love my children, even my trans daughter who taught me how to unapologetically beat to my own drum
23. Admitting my failures, taking responsibility for my actions, and making amends.
24. I will forgive but I will probably not forget
25. Trying to help people relax and let go
26. Understanding that if the thing is out of sight, I become dory. It’s why my cabinets have no doors.
27. Believing in the power of numbers, coincidences, fate, symbols, and the awe of the natural world
28. Constantly opening my mind further. Not necessarily every day, every week, every month. But enough to make it a habit.
29. When my kids tell me the honest truth, I ask questions to understand the situation but the consequences won’t be as harsh as when they lie to me.
30. My kids playing video games. Minecraft helped my then 8.5 year old go from low verbal to talking non-stop.
31. My kids having “too much” screen time
32. I don’t care about the two above bc a. They are 10 and 13. And b. They are learning and reading and strategizing and problem-solving and learning to lose. They are living their best life and Idgaf anymore. They are experiencing the world in the way that their brains understand (shout out mental health!). And they are finding the thing that helps spur their inspiration, their creativity, their passion, their productivity. Sound familiar?
33. Letting my kids free-range eat. Yep. Our kitchen is open 24/7. There is no shame in eating in our home. And the result is that they know when they are hungry, they know when the best time is for their body to eat. This didn’t happen overnight. This sense of trust in their intuition has taken years of building trust and boundaries. And it is a skill that they will be grateful for in the long run.
34. The pandemic supercharged this free-range eating skill
35. In this home, we do NOT do body shaming. We support body love and being grateful and appreciative of all the things we are able to do and how every body is unique and can do wonderful things.
Just putting this here to break up text. Don’t Mind Me.
36. Wearing tank tops in the cold
37. Wearing pajamas in public. I am comfy. And that is more important than what society “deems” is appropriate
38. Believing the societal norms we are living under are ready to be shaken up, flipped on its head, and radically updated.
39. Believing that there is a radical shift that is going to happen soon, where people feel their freest, calmest, and in tune with their body, their community, and the world around them.
40. Ok, that is a pipe dream but it is also a good book idea
41. Oh shit, I call dibs
44. No, really, I love being silly and don’t care who watches. They don’t hold a single teaspoon of power over me and my silly decisions
45. Unapologetically spiritual and unapologetically searching for more
46. #WordsDay – my friend has woods day, I now have words day.
47. Being blunt, no sugar coating, rip the band-aid off is the kind of honesty I can get behind
50. No. Really. Having the ability to turn anything and everything into an adventure, something to be curious and excited about because the unknown doesn’t need to be scary (thank you girls for this ability!)
51. Huh, this list makes me sound like I am a free lovin’ hippy
52. Eh, I don’t care.
53. Call me whatever, but don’t dare say I am not genuinely me and proud of it.
54. Proud supporter of you do you boo-boo
55. Acting on your inspiration
56. Demanding to be treated like I deserve to be treated – fairly and with respect
57. Having views and opinions that I routinely check to make sure I am on the right side of history, even if it’s uncomfortable
58. Leaning into uncomfortable
59. Embracing uncomfortable
60. Living my truth. Sharing my truth. Not to go viral, but to hopefully help just one person view life a little differently, that they are not alone in this chaotic life of ours. See below: DOOM PILES
61. Cursing, when used appropriately. And teaching my kids that cursing is OK in the right environments when used appropriately. Not at school.
62. Saying no, thank you without a single tinge of guilt for saying no, thank you.
63. Looking at things with a 360* perspective. It’s what I do and I’m not ashamed of it.
64. Making go with the low, a lifestyle
65. Approaching situations calmly and balanced
66. I just realized that a lot of the things that involve my children make it seem like I am a free-range parent or that I am making them grow up too fast. That’s not what I am doing. I am letting them have a childhood free of the constant societal bullshit to fit in or become something, someone they don’t want to be. They still have consequences, chores, and expectations. But it is a childhood full of unconditional love, understanding, and acceptance.
67. Knowing my limits
68. Becoming the version of badass that I have always envisioned when I hear the word badass
69. I smoke pot
70. Sometimes I smoke a lot of pot to keep my creativity flowing
71. Eating dessert for dinner OR breakfast whenever I want to.
72. Letting my kids have dessert before dinner
73. Buying a cake, or a pie, and eating out of the container, beginning from the center of said cake, or pie.
74. Reading when I need to slow down my brain, reset, and refocus.
75. Having zero regrets
76. Laughing uncontrollably
77. Smiling profusely
78. Realizing I am not a salad person. I have stopped pretending I am and no longer shame myself for not being one
79. If I don’t buy pre-cut, it will never be cut and thus never eaten and it will die in the fridge. I don’t make the rules.
Almost there! I pinky promise.
80. Letting my girls read or play on their tablets at the dinner table because hello, mental health. I’d rather they be at the table than fight them because we are a loud family and they have auditory processing issues. Half the time they turn off their devices and interact. Half the time they don’t and I am just happy they are hanging out with me.
81. As a good friend always says, do the thing that works
82. Having unfinished projects and hobbies sprawling everywhere
83. Doom piles on top of doom piles (See #60)
84. Attempting new ways to keep the family organized only to ditch it after finishing creating said way and not giving it a chance because follow through, amirite?
85. Boundaries. Period.
86. Kids being tardy to school. I know, I know. But what about the real world? Look, Becky, that’s the fucking point. To teach my girls that life isn’t a rat race, but a fucking adventure, and on that adventure, as long as they show up and participate, good. Obvs being late to EVERYTHING is a no-go in our home.
87. Making amends with family or friends that are anti-lgbtqia+, anti-basic human rights, anti-equality, anti-black lives matter. Life is too short and I don’t need that negativity in my life or around my girls anymore.
88. Making everyone happy. I am only 100% responsible for my happiness, 75% of my kids, and 50% of my husband’s. Even then, I try my hardest to make sure those 3 people are happy, and I care about other people’s mental health and well-being. But I am not responsible for anyone else’s
89. Trusting my gut to know what it wants
90. Trusting my kids to know what they want and what they don’t want
91. My living List. I have no clue how I am going to do it all, but I am doing this list for me and for my kids. But mostly me. And I have faith in me. And I don’t care who gets in my way, dammit. I am a beast.
92. Being infinitely curious about the world around me
Phew. That 92 things is a lot of words.
Bonus Badass Ways
BONUS #1: Finding meaning in all the things
BONUS #2: Connecting all the dots
BONUS #3: Approaching life stoically
BONUS #4: Looking at things with a 360* lens of perspective
BONUS #5: Finding solutions to problems that aren’t even problems
BONUS #6: Bribing my kids. No shame. However, I raised them on drinking water so bribing with soda at 10 and 13 doesn’t work.
BONUS #7: 100% proud believer of “better have than need it and not have it”
What Living Unapologetically feels like
It’s a mindset, it’s a body posture, it’s walking on clouds, it’s feeling the wind through your fingers.
It’s hot cocoa next to a fire and the feeling when your head first hits the pillow after a long day.
It’s the smell of the first rain and the warmth of a much-needed hug.
Living unapologetically feels like comfort, confidence, peace, empathy, bravery, and thriving all wrapped into one big ball.
It’s knowing and truly understanding that whatever happens, it’s going to be OK.
It’s also understanding that negativity isn’t worth the energy anymore.
And dammit, it feels right.
How you can live unapologetically
If you want to learn how to unapologetically beat to your own drum, my advice to you is to just breathe.
When something arises that sets you on edge or sparks any form of negativity, stop what you are doing, and breathe.
Breathe and let go of that negativity. Give it 90 seconds and that feeling will subside. Take 5 deep breaths, in, out, and let go before the negativity affects the next thing you do.
If you want, take it a step further and explore the root of the negativity. Understand the reason for the negativity.
Ask yourself: what is it about said thing that makes you feel shame, guilt, embarrassed?
And then see if you can repurpose, reframe, or redo. Or maybe it’s something you need to embrace fully or let go of because the stress of “fitting in” truly isn’t worth it.
But, in all actuality, living unapologetically and dancing to the beat of your own drum is all about being yourself.
It’s all about being true to your heart, and your soul. It’s about forgiving yourself, giving yourself time, and honoring your energies.
It’s about finding what keeps you grounded, what keeps you happy, what keeps you going when times are tough, and what keeps you anchored.
It’s about loving yourself. No matter what the haters say. It’s about believing in yourself and knowing you are worth it. Period
Dancing to the beat of your own drum
The biggest part of learning how to be unapologetically you and dance to the beat of your own drum – is to have fun, live your own life, and forget what anyone else thinks.
As long as you are on the right side of morality, lawfulness, and ethics.
Because being hateful, angry, greedy, or a bully is everything this list stands against.
Negativity is hard to break, and being a badass doesn’t happen overnight. It takes practice, and dedication to wholeheartedly embrace your authentic self.
But, with time and never giving up, you will become the badass you want to be. I pinky promise.
If you take nothing else from this post, take this nugget o’ wisdom:
And once more for full discretion and transparency: I am not 100% always happy, positive, or easygoing.
I have my moments where life is frustrating, where I lose my cool, where I put too much pressure on my kids, where I expect too much, and moments where I want to flip off all the stupid drivers on the road.
That is real life. The messy moments in between the badass, unapologetically me moments.
But, no matter what, unapologetically beating to your own drum in a badass way, is all in how you rebound back to your happy place and re-find your anchor in the storm.
Each one of these 92 badass ways are my anchors in this chaotic storm we call real life.
They keep me grounded, flexible, and ready to go with the flow because I am living life for me and my girls and no one else.
If you are ready to unapologetically beat to your own drum, it’s time you find your unapologetic, badass anchor (or anchors) in this chaotic storm that we call real life that will ground you and keep you flowing.
In the meantime, Adventure on with Curiosity,
~ Kelly “Beast” Steele
Before you go
P.S. What do you no longer give a single fuck about? What are the badass ways you live unapologetically? Or, what is holding you back from living your badass, unapologetic best life? Leave your answers in the comments!
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