I’m here today because I want to talk about this obsession I have with “being wild.” I often sign my emails with BE WILD. And people have asked me “what do you mean by that?” So that’s why I’m here. I want to tell you what I mean by that.
And to do that, I started by consulting the American heritage dictionary and looked up “wild.”
Here’s the definition:
“Wild: occurring, growing, or living in a natural state. not domesticated, cultivated or tamed.”
I kind of like that definition! I like it, because I believe that all of us, from the day we were born, have been domesticated, or trained, or brainwashed if you want to call it that.
We’ve been fed all kinds of beliefs, values and traditions. None of it was done with malice. Our parents just wanted us to be happy. They wanted us to fit in. For them that was the way to be happy.
But at a certain point in my life, I began to question that. It actually took me a long time to even realize what was going on.
I remember I was in my first year at university and I had won a nursing scholarship. I hadn’t even thought about nursing before, but I thought, ok I won the scholarship… I’ll just give it a try. Why? Because it would allow me to get married and have kids.
I had the grades to have gone into medical school. But in those days, a woman didn’t do that. You were supposed to get married and have kids.
I still remember a conversation I had with my Spanish professor. He asked me why nursing? And I told him why. And he asked me why not medical school? And I remember responding “I don’t know. I don’t even know if I’d want to go to medical school.”
And that’s when I woke up. I thought, “What do I want to do? What about me? Not all these things I’m supposed to do. What about me?”
That day marked the rebirth of my “wildness.”
So, I switched my major to German. I loved languages and I kept learning them. I eventually became a flight attendant for Lufthansa and that started my love affair with travel. I’ve spent all of my adult life living outside the continental United States, speak five languages and have lived in 3 countries.
Where am I going with all of this?
What I would like to do today is to ask you to just stop and think for a minute, and ask yourself, “When did I stop being wild?”
Maybe you were two. Maybe that’s when you began to realize that if you wanted your parents’ love, you had to do what they said. Part of that was to be safe, but as we grew older it was also to get their love, to be accepted, to fit in. And as we grew older, we began to lose touch with our wildness – our natural state.
But I firmly believe it is never too late to reconnect with our wild side!
I call the people who work with me and travel with me, “Wild Things.”
Why? Because this is my definition of Wild Thing:
“Wild Thing: a woman who feels comfortable in her own skin, who doesn’t care what anyone thinks about her (not in an “F-you” way, but in a liberating way!) She isn’t afraid to share her feelings, to be vulnerable. She is a woman who loves generously, lives unapologetically, and laughs out loud!”
So, my last question for you today, is:
ARE YOU A WILD THING TOO?
And if you’re not quite there yet, but would like to be…I invite you to do the “Wild Thing Quest!”