Leading an Audacious Life

By Atiya Sumar ~ Director Programmes at British Council on 18 Apr 2020Motivation


So, what does it mean to live audaciously?  A dear friend of mine has a habit of saying, “Go big or Go home.” And that is exactly what living audaciously is all about. It’s about being brave and living boldly; it’s about being authentic and original; it’s about defying convention and fearlessly pursuing your dreams. It’s easier to “Go Home”, but it is more rewarding to “Go Big.”

Have you ever asked yourself, are you living the life you want to live or are you living the life you have to live? There is a big difference. The life you want to live will include the dreams you are excited about and the purpose you are passionate about.  It will be the kind of creative and meaningful life you would live if you were not afraid.

It’s easy to stay in your comfort zone and go through the motions of life. But is that really living or is it just existing?  If you truly want to live a fulfilling life, then you must be willing to step out of your comfort zone and break away from the shackles holding you back.

As the world around us regenerates and reinvents itself, forcing us into temporary confinement, it gives us the perfect opportunity to introspect and start creating the life we were born to live. While we are at home, away from the chaos of the outside world, is the perfect time to focus on the chaos within ourselves. One of my favourite quotes is by the famous philosopher Fredrich Nietzsche; “One must still have chaos in one’s self to give birth to a dancing star.” Now, is the best time to harness that chaos, to do some spring cleaning of our thoughts and prepare to give birth to that dancing star within us.

Here are some lessons I am learning while trying to live audaciously:

  • Self-Discovery- Get to know yourself. Ask yourself tough questions. Are you truly living your best life? Or are you living a life which has been imposed on you by a person or by society? If you could be anything you want to be, what would you be? What are your strengths and weaknesses? These are just a few to get you started.


  • Shut out the noise – Ignore the voices inside and outside your head, which tell you what you can and can’t do. Replace those with affirmations and positive self-talk and self-love.


  • Have a vision – Use the answers to the tough questions to create the vision and road map for the new you; the authentic you.


  •  Reach out – to like minded people; to people who you look up to and want to emulate; for mentoring and guidance


  • Keep learning - It doesn’t matter how highly educated are or knowledgeable you are. You can always learn more. Purposefully learn something that’s outside of your norm.  Gain a new perspective. The secret behind the success of some of the most powerful people in the world today is their pursuit of new knowledge. 


  • Put yourself out there – Don’t be afraid to voice your opinions and thoughts. Do not be modest about promoting your skills, expertise and experience. There is always someone out there who is in need of what you have to offer and is waiting to hear from you.


Right now, our lives are like that of a caterpillar, who is in a cocoon. We need to be like that caterpillar who uses its alone time to shed off its old skin and emerge as a butterfly.

”The butterfly said to the sun, “They can’t stop talking about my transformation. I can only do it once in my lifetime. If only they knew, they can do it at any time and in countless ways.” – Dodinsky


By Atiya Sumar ~ Director Programmes at British Council