Ways to be Bold

Nancy Hechinger, my co-founder of the Womens Entrepreneur Festival wrote this and also talked about these points and others to kick off our festival.  I really love this so I thought I'd share.  This is a little bit slanted towards women as the Womens Entrepreneur Festival attendees were 99.9% women but there are tidbits for all.


(def).bold: daring, intrepid, brave, courageous, valiant, valorous, 

fearless, dauntless, audacious, daredevil; adventurous, heroic, 

plucky, spirited, confident, assured; gutsy, spunky, feisty; striking, 

vivid, bright, strong, eye-catching, prominent, impactful… 

impudent, insolent, impertinent, brazen, brash, disrespectful, 

presumptuous, forward; cheeky, fresh…

There are many ways to be bold–add your own.

Leave a good paying job when your passion takes you 


Start a company

Speak up in a meeting—when everyone but you agrees on 


Start a family

Or decide not to

Hire your first employee

Fire someone

Write a partnership agreement

End a partnership

End a marriage

Hire people better than you

Know how to delegate–

Know when not to

Leave work…when men and women with no family stay late

Don’t take a great job because it would not leave enough time 

for family

Break up with a guy/gal

Know when your business needs a leader other than you

Ask for a raise

Admit you are wrong

Face a disease

Follow your own passion, not your parents’

Go on a business trip, leaving kids at home. (without cooking all 

the meals for the time you are away)

Question a doctor.

See another one

Major change in hairstyle/color

Learn what you need to know for your career—when it involves 

stuff you’re bad at (e.g. numbers, budgets)

Be disruptive

Start over…in any part of your life

End a friendship

Stand by your values and convictions day by day

Let your kids fail (a little)

Trust your gut, even when the facts say otherwise

Don’t try to please everyone, all the time

Make time for exercise

Pamper yourself when there are so many other demands

Say ‘No’ to demands that drag but do not enrich your life and/or 


Hoard your time as a non-renewable resource

Raise money.

Introduce yourself to someone you admire and talk to them

Make a cold call

Handle an emergency situation, rationally; fall apart later

Make an untried recipe for a big dinner party

Stop wearing high heels

Navigate the intricate politics of a large, complex, traditional, 

often, hidebound institutions

Put your creative self…art (getting on stage, showing your 

paintings, a book) out in public.

Tell someone in business or friendship something they don’t 

want to hear

Tell a parent they can’t drive anymore, or pay their own bills. 

Taking over.

Sign a lease for your business–with more space than you need 

today, thinking about tomorrow

Take out a mortgage in your own name for the first time

Get into a male-dominated profession

Put your life on the line for something you believe in

Speak in Public

Define success on your own terms

Toot your own horn when you can..

When you can’t toot the horn of another woman!

Comments (Archived):

  1. William Mougayar

    I remember that message from her talk last week, and I liked it a lot. It resonated with me, and I thought it was motivational and focused.

  2. Ella Dyer

    Love, love, love this! It is also about just being alive and adding value. As always, thanks.Ella

  3. Lisa Abeyta

    Sharing this with my groups here – loved the list and what it inspired me to add to it.

  4. Brandon Burns

    Being bold often times puts you in “love you or hate you” territory. I’m planning on blogging more and trying to increase my profile, so right now I’m giving a lot of thought about how bold I want to be with the rhetoric I put out, especially when related to my company. Getting noticed is great, but you also have to be conscious of the brand you’re building.

    1. Gotham Gal

      it all connects.

  5. Lisa Mogull

    Love this! Thanks!!!

  6. AG

    Love and plan to reference as a reminder!

  7. Scarlett Sieber

    What is so great about Nancy’s points is that they are applicable to everyone so they become personal and more realistic. I, like many others, will reference this list time and time again.

  8. awaldstein

    My father simple said–‘Make a difference’.To do that you do what it takes, may of the pieces above.

    1. Gotham Gal

      i like that. my parents, who were not exactly long on advice said just be the best at what ever you choose to do.

      1. awaldstein

        Older I get the more I realize what a good man my dad was.Hardships aside after years of night school to become a physicist he decided to go back to his neighborhood in Paterson teach school and give back.

        1. Gotham Gal

          the thing about our parents, alive or dead, our relationship with them continues forever.

          1. awaldstein

            Ain’t that the truth.Bday this week I am now one year older then my dad when he passed 28 years ago and still with me.Equally as amazing as the true fact that from the moment our kids are born they become the most interesting people there are to us (From Lost in Translation).

  9. SallyBroom

    This is amazing – thank you for reminding your community just how bold we are and just how often. It’s so easy to overlook instead of taking stock and strength from our boldness!

  10. Alex Wolf

    I love the list. Someone should make a poster, or a short video. A great pick me reminder.I’d like to add one thing – create a climate where being bold is vital and valued. Being bold is not just about individuals, it’s about groups and forming connections which foster more to be bold.

    1. Gotham Gal

      Nice addition