I do love a good book that leaves you feeling empowered and reminds you that anything is possible when you focus on yourself as the driver of your life.
So I was excited to start to read Untamed, stop pleasing, start living by Glennon Doyle after I had seen it had been recommended by Adele.
Untamed shares many empowering moments of Glennon’s life, and it goes into details about her background, how she became sober, divorced her husband and learned to grow as a person and build a life with her now wife, Abby.
For me this book was a little too personal and too much focused on being a memoir, where she shared many family stories that I didn’t relate to.
However, I did find some thought-provoking stories which inspired me and reminded me that I am the driver of my life and I am in charge of the decisions and direction of my life.
The book starts with a story about a cheetah who has only ever lived at the zoo, how it is confined to the walls of it’s pen and doesn’t know anything else. But just by watching the cheetah and how it strolls around, back and forth, it’s clear it is looking for more in life, it’s instinct knows there is more to discover outside the of walls of the zoo.
Each of us can relate to this at some point or another during our life.
Are we living a full life? Or are we being restrained, either by ourselves or others? Is there more out there for us to achieve in this world?
Feelings and Emotions
I enjoyed how Glennon talks about feelings and emotions and that being human is not about feeling happy, it’s about feeling everything.
- Consuming keeps us distracted, busy, and numb. Numbness keeps us from becoming.
- Pain is not tragic. Pain is magic. Suffering is tragic. Suffering is what happens when we avoid pain and consequently miss our becoming.
- Because who I will become tomorrow is so unforeseeable and specific that I’ll need every bit of today’s lessons to become her.
- To become a better person it’s necessary to search for and depend upon the voice of inner wisdom instead of voices of outer approval.
- Brave means living from the inside out. Brave means, in every uncertain moment, turning inward, feeling for the Knowing, and speaking it out loud.
- Maybe courage is not just refusing to be afraid of ourselves but refusing to be afraid of others, too.
Being human is not hard because you’re doing it wrong, it’s hard because you’re doing it right. You will never change the fact that being human is hard, so you must change your idea that it was ever supposed to be easy.
How we approach each event in our life and who we turn to for guidance can change the outcome and our experience. Depending on the opinions of other people and their beliefs, doesn’t allow us to grow into the person we are meant to be. I love that Glennon shares how we must be true to ourselves before all else:
- I’ll abandon everyone else’s expectations of me before I’ll abandon myself. I’ll disappoint everyone else before I’ll disappoint myself. I’ll forsake all others before I’ll forsake myself. Me and myself: We are till death do us part.
- Our deep desires are wise, true, beautiful, and things we can grant ourselves without abandoning our Knowing. Following our deep desire always returns us to integrity. If your desire feels wrong to you: Go deeper. You can trust yourself. You just have to get low enough.
We must live lives of our own. To live a life of her own, each woman must also answer: What do I love? What makes me come alive? What is beauty to me, and when do I take the time to fill up with it? Who is the soul beneath all of these roles?
I never want to stop living as my own person now I am a mum, I still want to have goals and achieve my dreams. I hope this will also allow my children to pursue their dreams, where I can be a positive influence on their lives without pushing them to live the life I never had, because I will be living the life I want.
Glennon shared this so well, as parents we do want what is best for our children, but we must continue to live:
- What a terrible burden for children to bear—to know that they are the reason their mother stopped living. What a terrible burden for our daughters to bear—to know that if they choose to become mothers, this will be their fate, too.
- There is no greater burden on a child than the unlived life of a parent.
- Parenthood is serving the peanuts amid turbulence.
- A woman becomes a responsible parent when she stops being an obedient daughter. When she finally understands that she is creating something different from what her parents created.
We grow up teaching our daughters to be tender and kind, whereas we should be teaching them to be to also be strong and ambitious. On the other hand, we teach our sons to be strong, but they also need to be taught how to care, love and share emotions.
As equals, we should grow up learning each role to become a fully rounded adult and to be able to live and enjoy a full life.
The more powerful and happy a woman becomes, the less people like and trust her. So we proclaim: Women are entitled to take their rightful place!
We all grow up with a set of beliefs that we have learned from our parents, religion, education… but are they correct for us? Have they evolved over time? Glennon shared a great example and went on to clarify how important it is to find the right beliefs for yourself and the importance to relearn beliefs throughout your life.
- We are like computers, and our beliefs are the software with which we’re programmed. Often our beliefs are programmed into us without our knowledge by our culture, community, religion, and family. Even though we don’t choose those subconscious programs, they run our lives.
It’s important not to abandon yourself when you feel low, but to take actions to reset your mind and body to feel better to move forward.
Some of Glennon’s ideas to reset yourself are:
Drink a glass of water. Take a walk. Take a bath. Practice yoga. Meditate. Go to the beach and watch the waves. Play with my dog. Hug my wife and kids. Hide the phone.
One story Glennon highlighted was about a woman who stood up at an event Glennon was speaking at and said she preferred the old Glennon’s writing, where she talked about pain and how hard life was, and she was finding it hard to related to the new happier Glennon.
This I can’t relate to, reading and listening about someone else’s pain is not on my to-do list. We have all gone through different experiences in life and I feel the focus should be on how you move forward and overcome each issue and not dwell on the past.
I don’t want to find comfort in the weakness and pain of other women. I want to find inspiration in the joy and success of other women.
This was the first book I had read from Glennon Doyle, and although it did share some inspirational insight, it was full of personal stories that I found hard to relate to.
I hope that whatever you do next is born from you and not imposed on you. I hope the rest of your life is your idea. For what it’s worth, I hope you trust yourself. You know what you know.