I didn’t want to read Untamed by Glennon Doyle upon its release in March 2020. I’d first heard about it on Good Morning America when the author spoke with Robin Roberts about the book and her journey towards being “untamed”. I thought “Wow this woman is pretentious. Why would I want to hear about this elitist’s experience towards self-actualization?”. Time went by. I saw the book repeatedly over the last ten months with many giving a positive review on it and thought “Maybe I should pick it up. The worst thing that could happen is that I put it down if it gets on my nerves too much.” Well, I finished the book and was pleasantly surprised about the lessons that it provided me and my psyche.
The biggest lesson from this book is to live free. There are so many ways in which to live free that include living your truth and trusting your instincts. Living your truth ultimately means to trust your instincts. It can also mean living your best life and not conforming to the societal norms and mores that we have been taught over our lifetimes if they don’t make us happy. One will be better for their family and friends once this is realized within yourself. It can feel as if a weight has been lifted.
The author’s journey towards self-fulfillment is much different than mine. She experienced addiction and bulimia as well as a broken marriage before meeting the love of her life and creating a new, modern family with which she is happy. I’ve not experienced any of the struggles that she has dealt with but have dealt with my own struggles in the form of negative self-talk, anxiety like I have never experienced before (especially during the pandemic), negative self-esteem, or other mental health concerns. Anyone that has also dealt with this knows that living with depression or anxiety can stilt your way of living and can really prohibit you from doing the things in life that you want and would provide you happiness. It’s freeing once we can let go of the way in which negative self-talk has ruled our lives. It wasn’t the author’s intention to send this message in this book, but everyone can have their own interpretation and perception of it. This is mine.
I will admit that the political discussion in the book was slightly annoying; politics is something that I look to escape in a book like this. However, I understand that this is the author’s truth and is pivotal to her story and lessons in the book. There were some feminist undertones as well. It wasn’t burning-your-bra type stuff but touched upon the empowerment to live true to ourselves. Feminism is about choice in my opinion; I can still be a strong woman even if I don’t have a career. I can be fulfilled without running a company. I choose to not let my negative thoughts about myself and those thoughts that eat at me so much it hurts prohibit me from living my truth as a happy, content woman.
I know this journey will be ongoing because let’s face it: All of us have bad days. However, the ability to have more good days than bad, be able to quiet my brain, and let go of what used to bother me will feel so liberating. The idea of liberation is discussed in many ways in this book. Reframing my thoughts and working to be a better me for myself, my friends and my family is my ultimate liberation.