Getting gutsy is all about stepping outside your comfort zone to reach your goals and live a life that makes you truly happy. This post is my entry for Jessica Lawlor’s Get Gutsy Essay Contest. To get involved and share your own gutsy story, check out this post for contest details and download a free copy of the inspiring Get Gutsy ebook.


2014 wasn’t the best year I ever had. After a series of events which started with my husband, our daughter and I all losing our jobs in early January, lurched through the year to include an ambulance trip and a night in the ER with a suspected heart attack (and no health insurance), the loss of my 14 year old dressage horse to a chronic health issue, a severe concussion which led to several weeks of layup (and a real understanding of the words “brain injury”), the loss of my elderly and dearly beloved Corgi to cancer, a massive oak tree falling on our newly-completed barn, one of my brother’s being diagnosed with a brain tumor (benign, thank God), a week in the hospital with a kidney infection (and still no health insurance); and culminated in my husband being laid off the day after Christmas… yeah, you could say it wasn’t such a stellar year.

While there were many days that required a massive dose of gutsiness just to get out of bed (wondering what disaster was going to befall us next), I somehow just kept going. I think it was more about becoming numb than actually being gutsy.

Numb puts one foot in front of the other. Numb goes through routines. Numb functions.

Gutsy requires more. Gutsy requires some sort of spark, some catalyst. Some autonomous movement. No, 2014 was about plain, numb survival.

The gutsy kicked in during the week between Christmas and New Year’s Day. The gutsy was all about The. Decision.

Yes. The. Decision. A simple, life-changing, indeed life-affirming decision that 2015 is going to be different.

It is amazing how gutsy you need to be to change your beliefs. To change the trajectory of your life by making a simple decision that you’re done being numb. You’ve had it with being steam-rolled by a set of circumstances beyond your control.

I had no control over (at least most of) the circumstances, but I sure as heck had control over how I responded to them. And I decided that my red-headed, rebel-without-a-clue self was done lying down and playing life’s doormat.

This red-head wants to Shine! This rebel-without-a-clue wants to build an amazing business that connects with other women who are looking for a deeper connection with their lives. This former doormat has something to say, something to share, something of value to put out into the world; and The.Decision. is all about leaving 2014 in the rearview mirror and walking forward into this new life.

There is a number on a piece of paper hanging above my desk. That number, which isn’t 6 figures, but is a heck of a lot more than I’ve made in any year before, is my income goal for this year.

Simply imagining that number was possible required an act of gutsiness. Writing it down on a piece of paper, even more. And building my business to the point where that figure is a reality? Yup, that’s going to  require an IV drip of daily gutsiness. And I’m ready.

Will I encounter challenges this year? Guaranteed. Will I stand up to them with more gutsiness than I mustered in 2014? I’d like to think so, but the real power isn’t in what may happen, or how I may handle it. The real power is in the belief. The belief that I Can Do This.

Holding onto that belief will not only move my life into areas only dreamed of, it will probably count among the most gutsy things I’ve ever done in, and for, my life.

Where have you injected a much-needed dose of gutsiness into your life? Let me know in the comments below, or head over to Jessica’s Get Gutsy Essay Contest!

photo credit: <a href=””>BrookelGarro</a> via <a href=””>photopin</a> <a href=””>cc</a>