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What Billy Bob Thornton Can Teach Us About Listening to Our Own Truths

by Clara Freeman, author/owner of Authentic Women Networks

It’s not by default, but by design that I’ve been missing in action for the last two months! I found myself regressing in the progress of living and writing from my soul, feeling stagnant and finding myself becoming bored in the process of blogging and reading the blogs of others, in and out of my field of expertise.

I decided it was time for me to take myself out of the constant stream of informational overflow that everyone seemed to share via social media. I became bored reading the sameness of ‘experts’ who weren’t really saying much of anything that I hadn’t heard or practiced before. And then, it dawned on me that my own contributions in the way of growth and personal development under the umbrella of ‘authenticity’ might be sounding/reading just as some of the blogs I was turning away from.

How many times can you rehash old stuff without it sounding stale and “been there done that?” So, the catalyst for stepping away from my blogs and sharing with my readers, was simply boredom—I was bored with how I delivered the messages of my reawakening from a place of my own truths of authentic passion and purpose. I needed to step back and reexamine who I am and whose I am and what my purposeful intent in serving others truly is.

My days have been spent in retrospect of how far I’ve come. I have spent quality time reconnecting to my loved ones, formulating plans on how to make my messages clearer to my readers by sharing the empowering impact, awakening to my soul purpose has created in my own life. I am a creature of habit, in that I awaken early to feel one with the universe and it is in those early morning moments that I’m feeling the presence of The Almighty. These months, I have rested well, meditated on my strengths and embraced my weaknesses. I know that I will have moments of doubts and uncertainty on the path that has been chosen for me. I also know that these things are of a human condition and that God’s grace through my faith in him, will move me out of those places where I’m feeling stuck.

One fateful morning I woke from being in a state of half slumber and half awaken to trace the lesson of my dreams and turned to the keyboard. The word “guideposts” had disturbed my sleep and so, I typed it into the search engine. Guideposts were short inspirational pamphlets started by Norman Vincent Peale around the 70s and 80s and is carried on by his granddaughter via the guideposts website. Guideposts were of significance to me because I often read the pamphlets when I needed inspiration and motivation as a young wife and mother, coping with everyday life situations. Today, I continue to read this minister of positive thinking to awaken any thoughts of inspiration that I want to convey in my messages for women on their journey to “becoming.”

After a recent evening of nature relaxation and introspection,I turned to Oprah’s Own Super Soul Sunday to find a soft spoken actor as the guest. My first thought was, “why in the world is this person on Oprah’s Super Soul Sunday?”

How quickly we humans judge what we don’t understand! The actor/ musician/screenwriter/ former husband of Angelina Jolie, Billy Bob Thorton probably stands out because of his and Angelina Jolie wearing each others blood in a locket worn around their necks and his acting in the movies ‘Sling blade’ , ‘Monster’s Ball’ and ‘Bad Santa.’ (roster of films to his credit)

This man reflected on his beginnings, his father’s obsession about death and how the two of them bonded by going to view fatal fatalities, such as drownings and car accidents. He admitted that he thought it was his father’s way of trying to understand death. He shared how he was once so poor , in the beginning of his passion, all he ate was potatoes and took odd jobs to follow his dream of becoming an actor and writer… He even told how in school, instead of listening to the teacher, he’d be writing short stories, until one day his teacher confronted him, suggesting he write a class play to be performed in the school- Billy Bob Thorton wrote the play in 14 minutes!

Sometimes, the least likely person can motivate us to continue to follow our passions. There will be times of struggle. You might even come from a dysfunctional household. Your family might live in poverty or some adult might have told you that you’re not capable of achieving your dreams.  Don’t listen to them!

One of Billy Bob Thorton’s many odd jobs was that of a waiter, where, unbeknownst to him,the man he served food to was Billy Wilder, a film director and screenwriter, who advised him to write. The actor went on to grace Forbes 2007 estimated earnings for the year of $20 million. After 5 marriages, he admits that “marriage doesn’t work” for him. He has been called an atheist and admits that he’s not fanatical about anything (religion).

My advice would be in regards to other people success is to take what matters to you and apply that to your goals. What I took from Billy Bob Thorton’s appearance on Oprah’s Super Soul Sunday is this:

1. You’re not your environment or situation

2. Follow Your dreams even when others doubt

3. Start somewhere; anywhere

4. Enlist a mentor or someone who will keep you accountable and believes in your talents and gifts.

And as Norman Vincent Peale would say, ” Have a God Mind.”

Peace and blessings,