Between February 8-18, 2013, 16 inspiring leaders from three countries joined an incredible team of entrepreneurs, coaches, mentors, do-gooders, and go-getters, and we all lived together in a house on Alamo Square Park for ten sunshine-filled days, forming the Bold Academy San Francisco. Together, we built a community of intention, passion, and love; with the mission of becoming our best selves, living the lives we were meant to live, and creating positive social change. It was one of the greatest pleasures of my life to help curate this transformative experience and be a member of this family, and I am forever grateful to everyone who made it possible.
Below is the welcome speech I wrote and delivered the first evening at Bold, just after all of us arrived to the house. I hope it can serve as a perpetual pep talk (thanks, Kid President!) for the Bold community, as well as the world at large.
The Ceiling Can’t Hold Us
Smiley’s Bold Academy Welcome Speech
As prepared for delivery
Chalkboard room @ The Bold Academy
Friday, February 8, 2013
“Welcome everyone to San Francisco. Welcome to the Bold Academy. WOOOOOT!
Let’s all pause for a second and close our eyes. Take a long deep breath. Relax. Ponder for 30 seconds about what this moment means to you, and how you feel. Cherish this moment; whether you feel excited, exhausted, scared, nervous, stressed, or sad.
Keeping your eyes closed, take another deep breath. Let it out. Once more. Let it out. Really let it out. AHHHHHH! SCREAM THIS TIME, AHHHHHH!!!
We have come here today from as near as four houses down the block, and as far away as Germany and Brazil. We have come for many different reasons.
To grow. To learn. To reflect. To challenge ourselves. To overcome our deepest fears. To master our strengths, and acknowledge our weaknesses. To start projects, to finish projects. To laugh. To love. To play. To breathe. To stretch. To eat well. To practice daily. To work. We are not sure where this journey will take us, but we embrace its course and its beauty.
The journey is the journey. The journey is the journey. We are here! Think about that.
In all the cities and all the towns and countries of the world, in all the bars and restaurants and cafes and forests and offices and sandy beaches, we have come together in this space, in this beautiful home, next to this glorious park, in this magical city, today, here, now, at this very moment.
And while our reasons for coming here might be different, we are bonded in a common passion– a passion for life. A passion for making ourselves and those around us the best we can possibly be, a passion for knocking down walls and barriers and living our lives to the fullest, and thus changing the lives of those around us.
But, that doesn’t mean it will be easy, that doesn’t mean each of us won’t have to struggle, to fail, to try, to try again, to try another time, to try harder, to challenge ourselves and each other, every single day, now, and in the future.
This is a special moment. The future is uncertain, the possibilities are infinite. Over the next ten days, come back to this moment of excitement, of beginning, of renewal, of possibility and openness, of embracing fear and the unknown, of embracing this journey, whenever you need to. Come back to the present, for that’s where we are.
Remember: If it were easy, it wouldn’t be BOLD.
The ceiling can’t hold us! THE CEILING CAN’T HOLD US! Everybody up!”
[BLAST "CAN'T HOLD US" by MACKLEMORE & RYAN LEWIS feat. RAY DALTON >>> EVERYONE STARTS DANCING…]
Speech written and delivered by Smiley Poswolsky, Academy Director at The Bold Academy. The Bold Academy is a life accelerator program designed to maximize your performance and empower you to live the life you were meant to live. For more information, check out boldacademy.com.