When I was in high school I thought boys would never like me because I was the only 15 year old I knew that hadn't kissed a boy.
When I bought my first pair of Ugg boots I spent a week worrying that they were already out of style. From about 4th grade until I was around 19 I thought if I didn't do something spectacular with my life, everyone would be disappointed in me.
When I started college I never told anyone that I loved reading and puzzles. I thought they would all think I was lame, so I didn't let my dork show and only sang out loud when my roommates weren't home. Even then I sang in a whisper.
Then, sometime between 21 and 22 I stopped giving a f@*#.
I'd almost lost my first battle with depression and anxiety, and when I came through to the other side I saw two options: start living authentically or head right back down the black hole.
I started writing without worrying whether or not my words offended someone. They could stop reading.
I taught my yoga classes the way I wanted, regardless of the fact that half the class might prefer a different style. They could stop coming to class.
I embraced my full, authentic self even though it was a Sarah some of my friends didn't like. They could stop being my friends.
And I did lose some friends. Not in a dramatic, official way. Just over time. The more authentic I became the less I heard from them. But the in the gap I found those people who love me, flaws and all, for the authenticity I bring every day.
I kept traveling and moving between odd jobs and temporary passions because I realized I couldn't live my life for someone else. Plus, no one was that invested in my life anyway. And you know what I found? When you stop giving a f@*# about what everyone thinks and start living honestly and authentically in accord with your heart, that's when life becomes really f@*#ing awesome.
You meet people who love the real you and who make room for that real you to shine. You start doing things you were always scared of and start taking risks that others told you were too dangerous.
When I started being honest about who I was, it opened a door to live a life I never had the guts to admit I wanted. Since then I've seen more of the world than most full grown adults I know and I've done more than 18-year-old Sarah knew it was possible for one person to do.
I've lived dreams I never knew I had and started letting myself dream bigger than ever before. I opened up to the world, and in return, the world opened itself up to me. And now, every day is filled with magic and every night I fall asleep with a smile on my face, thinking about how incredible this world really is.
And it all happened because I started waking up every morning and saying, "I'm going to do whatever the f@*# I want today."
It's your life people, so start living it YOUR WAY.